We are delighted to welcome celebrated artist and Middlesex alumnus Kelvin Okafor to join staff, ACI students, alumni and guests in the University’s Grove Atrium.
At this special event, Carole-Anne Upton (Executive Dean - Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries) will formally thank Kelvin Okafor on behalf of the University for his generous donation of the pencil portrait ‘Mia’s interlude’. ACI students are welcome to view this striking portrait as it is unveiled for the first time, and to hear from the artist himself about his work, his career and his inspirations. This will be followed by a Q&A session chaired by Professor Kurt Barling.
Please register here to book your place.
About Kelvin Okafor
Kelvin graduated from Middlesex University with BA (Hons) in Fine Art in 2009. From the age of eight he remembers having a strong fascination with drawing with pencils. He found that with single shades of lead, he could create tones and textures so defined and so abstract that an illusion of colour would be formed before him.
The style in which Okafor creates his portraits is known as ‘hyper-realism’. Each highly detailed drawing can take over 180 hours. Through his work, Kelvin intends to create art that prompts an emotional response to viewers, arousing feelings of enchantment, reflection, stillness and awareness. In 2018 Kelvin became the first black artist to be permanently exhibited in the House of Commons. His pencil portrait of the late Bernie Grant MP was unveiled by Leader of the Opposition Jeremy Corbyn MP, and hangs outside the Attlee room in Portcullis House.
Mia’s interlude is a pencil portrait of Kelvin’s family friend Mia Cadman at 11 years old. Kelvin has been drawing Mia every two years since she was three years old, following her journey through life. After feeling compelled to draw her the first time he met her, Kelvin plans to continue creating portraits of Mia.