Cassi Namoda - 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in Association with Poly Auction Hong Kong Sunday, November 28, 2021 | Phillips

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  • “When you experience Mozambique’s cities and the landscape, when you walk through Maputo’s boulevards, you find an urban, European past; that style of living is juxtaposed with African sensuality. It’s a complex, mixed culture—one that can only be embraced as a layered community, a layered mystery.” — Cassi Namoda

    Phillips is excited to present the work of Cassi Namoda for the first time at auction in Asia. Cassi Namoda’s evocative figurative portraits explore the intricacies and intimacies of everyday life in the shadows of post-colonialist Mozambique. Now based between New York and Los Angeles, Namoda was born in Mozambique to an American father and Mozambiquan mother, and grew up in Indonesia, Kenya, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Benin and Uganda. Her dream-like tableaux weave the cross-cultural experiences of the African diaspora with the spiritualism and rituals of daily life, Namoda’s protagonists depicted as they cry, embrace, wade into deep waters, and journey along winding paths. 


    Virgilio Oito, He Who Owns Land in Goana evokes the humour of historical African films with the sensationalism of telenovelas, a scenario located somewhere between the heartfelt and absurd, the joyous and the macabre. Dressed in a glittering yellow jacket and shirt unbuttoned to the chest at a wooden bar beneath the neon pink sky and palm trees, Namoda’s central protagonist and his companion casually chew on their snacks. Namoda suggests that in Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) Africa, the relationship between Blackness and disability is embroiled in the violence of colonialism on Black bodies, and the lined faces, blood red stool beneath the protagonist and scarlet liquid flowing from his companion’s lips betray a sinister tension. Looking warily off-canvas, her subjects are sat around in anticipation of impending action, whether good or bad.


    Namoda studied cinematography at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, and after her first gallery show in 2017 she quickly gained traction among collectors and curators. In 2020 the artist was the subject of solo exhibitions at Goodman Gallery, New York and François Ghebaly, Los Angeles. Namoda’s work has been included in exhibitions at Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, New York; Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, New York; CFHILL, Stockholm; and Library Street Collective, Detroit. Her work has been collected by the Peréz Art Museum Miami, the MACAAL in Marrakesh, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. In 2020, Namoda was commissioned to create the cover art for Vogue Italia’s January issue - a recognition of her varied influences, which include photography and fashion, as well as film and cultural anthropology.


    • Provenance

      Ghebaly Gallery, Los Angeles
      Acquired from the above by the present owner


Virgilio Oito, He Who Owns Land in Goana

signed, titled, inscribed and dated '"Virgilio Oito" NAMODA '18 Chatham, NY' on the reverse
acrylic on canvas
122 x 91.5 cm. (48 x 36 in.)
Painted in 2018.

Full Cataloguing

HK$100,000 - 150,000 

Sold for HK$277,200

Contact Specialist

Danielle So
Specialist, Head of Day Sale
+852 2318 2027

20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in Association with Poly Auction

Hong Kong Auction 29 November 2021