Omar Ba (b. Senegal, 1977) has studied both in Senegal (l'Ecole Nationale des Beaux-arts, Senegal, 2002) and in Switzerland (l'Ecole Supérieur des Beaux-arts, Geneva, 2005 and ECAV - MAPS Arts in Public Spheres, 2011), absorbing influences from both of these radically different cultures. Ba lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland.
Ba's works combine memories of Senegal with experiences of his current home in Geneva, bringing together African and Western influences. He predominantly makes paintings directly onto corrugated cardboard sheets, the artist's preferred surface. The images are often centred around single figures, isolated on blackened surfaces.
The highly patterned and elaborate personages draw together imagery associated with famine, tribal decoration, factional warfare and despotic self-styled leaders, along with advances in new technology and popular culture. These almost mythological, 'folklore' inspired beings are not void of Western influences, which serve as a nod to Postmodernity and the culture of 'now'.
In 2011, Ba received the prestigious Swiss Art Award. 2014 subsequently saw the publication of The Prophecy of the People of Durban/La Prophetie des Gens de Durban, the artist's most recent catalogue.
Selected exhibitions include the Biennale de Dakar (Dakar, Senegal, 2014), Vitalic (Hales Gallery, London, UK, 2013), La Jeunesse est un art (Manor Kunstpreis, Aagauer Kunsthaus, Aarau, Switzerland, 2012), Swiss Art Awards (Bale, Switzerland), and others. Ba's works can be found in private and public collections, including Credit Suisse, Fonds municipal d'art contemporain de la Ville de Geneve, Fonds municipal d'art contemporain de la Ville de Paris, Centre national des arts plastiques, France, the Barbier-Mueller Collection and others.