Jadé Fadojutimi - Modern & Contemporary Art Evening Sale New York Tuesday, May 14, 2024 | Phillips
  •  “I recall Paul Klee’s description of taking his lines for a walk. Jadé’s race by: they run, skip, jump, rest. They rouse surfaces even as they shoot arrows into the depths.”
    —Jennifer Higgie

    Jadé Fadojutimi’s The Pour, painted in 2022, is a glistening mosaic of gem-like hues: vivid magentas, coral reds, royal purples, and hints of turquoise that traverse the canvas in a richly choreographed dance. A central semicircle motif seems to evoke the “pouring” action that the title alludes to, while patterns reminiscent of leaves and greenery erupt in growth along the margins. Somewhere between figuration and abstraction, one can almost make out faces peeking through the frenetic brushstrokes and sunset-hued washes. Brimming with Fadojutimi’s characteristic vibrancy, The Pour envelopes its viewer into the artist’s exuberant and precious world. As the artist elucidates, through “form, color, or texture or pattern […] they become spaces for me to exist.”i


    Gustav Klimt, Bauerngarten, 1907. Private Collection.

    The dynamism and sense of quick movement in The Pour is a result of Fadojutimi’s unique painting technique. The artist thins her paint with the quick drying agent Liquin, which dries fast and to a high gloss, giving the effect of a reflection on glass or water. In her more recent paintings, and in this work in particular, she draws directly onto the canvas with oil bar, a medium that accommodates both the speed and spontaneity of her painting process. The introduction of the oilstick to her practice represented a new relationship with drawing for the artist. While she previously described drawing as “an appetizer for painting,” the oilstick represents for her a hybrid between the two and is a testament to her dedication to fading the boundaries between painting and drawing.ii

    “One of my studio mates made fun of me, she said watching me paint is like watching me doing aerobics.”
    —Jadé Fadojutimi

    For Fadojutimi, it is important that her medium keep up with her fast-paced artistic process; having stated that she is most productive in the evening, Fadojutimi often completes her works in late-night bursts of creativity. Dancing and running about her studio, the artist will even pause to write in her diary; writing, for her, is as intrinsic to her practice as mark-making, which is reflected in her poetic and narrative titles. The Pour – both vague enough to be generative, and specific enough to find resonance in the visuals of the work – emblematizes her mastery of titling.


    Fadojutimi’s rich canvases draw inspiration from myriad sources, the country of Japan being paramount: Japanese artists such as Makiko Kudo and Yoshitomo Nara serve as great influences to her, as well as Japanese animation; she even completed a residency in Japan in 2016.iii As a reminder of her childhood, she will often put on anime or video game soundtracks as she works. In the Western art historical canon, Fadojutimi’s work has been compared to abstract expressionists such as Joan Mitchell and Lee Krasner, whose energized, rhythmic marks and high impact color schemes seem to find a modern-day equivalent in the British artist’s practice. In response to Krasner’s 2019 exhibition Living Colour, the Fadojutimi admitted her envy of Krasner’s use of color, adding that, for herself, “Color is an invitation to someone’s eyes, and how they see life and pleasure or even the opposite of that.”iv For Fadojutimi, color always comes first.


    Lee Krasner, Desert Moon, 1955. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Image: © 2024 Museum Associates / LACMA. Licensed by Art Resource, NY, Artwork: © 2024 Pollock-Krasner Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

    2022, the year that The Pour was painted, was a notable year for the artist; new paintings by Fadojutimi were on display in the Central Pavilion of the Venice Biennale, which followed her first US solo museum exhibition at ICA Miami, Yet, Another Pathetic Fallacy. The Hepworth Wakefield also displayed a solo exhibition by the artist that year, titled Can We See the Colour Green Because We Have a Name for It? At age twenty-eight in 2018, Fadojutimi was the youngest artist to have her work collected by the Tate Modern, and since then her trajectory has been one to watch as she establishes herself as one of the most compelling new voices in abstract painting. Created at a high point of her continually ascending career, The Pour is a striking meditation on color, life and growth. Thrumming with energy, Fadojutimi pours herself into this work; as she has said, “a self-portrait is not always the depiction of a face.”v

    “While I’m painting, the harmonious unity of my senses becomes apparent. They muddle together, chitter-chattering about their newfound warmth as though it’s their first connection.”
    —Jadé Fadojutimi

    i “Jadé Fadojutimi,” Tate Short, 2020, online.

    ii David Trigg, “Jadé Fadojutimi – interview: ‘I bathe in the conversations between colour, texture, line, form, composition, rhythm, marks and disturbances’,” studio international, April 26, 2021, online.

    iii Christopher Bollen, “Meet Eight Artists Reshaping the 59th Venice Biennale,” Interview Magazine, April 21, 2022, online.

    iv Jadé Fadojutimi, quoted in Katy Hessel, “'The whole show feels like one painting' // Jadé Fadojutimi x Katy Hessel on Lee Krasner,” Barbican Centre, August 9, 2019, online.

    v Jennifer Higgie, Jadé Fadojutimi: Jesture, exh. cat., Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, 2021, p. 10.

    • Provenance

      Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London
      Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2022

    • Artist Biography

      Jadé Fadojutimi

      Jadé Fadojutimi is a British contemporary artist who lives and works in London. A recent graduate of the Royal College of Art, Fadojutimi has seen a precipitous ascent to success: she is the youngest artist represented in the collection of the Tate, London, and has upcoming exhibitions planned for the Hepworth Wakefield and the Liverpool Biennial. Fadojutimi’s work is immersive and all-encompassing, featuring tightly woven lattices of ecstatic pigment and electric line. The raw but bubbly energy of her paintings reflects aspects of the artist’s own interiority, as she treats each canvas as an opportunity to explore undiscovered or under-interrogated aspects of her individuality. Fadojutimi believes that color and personality mingle and encourage one another; the matrices of line and color resemble the psychedelic spindles of neural networks, actualizing the artist’s investigative efforts as visual translations of the artist’s explorations of identity and fluidity.

      Fadojutimi brings a frenetic energy to painting, as many of her works are completed in late-night bursts of creativity; what may start the night as a blank canvas often emerges in the morning as a finished work. Describing her practice in environmental terms, Fadojutimi strives to incorporate the ineffable associations of memory absorbed from the warm moments and special objects of life; taken against the societal backdrop of their creation, Fadojutimi’s paintings shine out as optimistic beacons for dark times.

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The Pour

signed twice, titled and dated "Jadé Fadojutimi Jan '22 'The Pour'" on the reverse
acrylic, oil and oil bar on canvas
63 x 59 1/8 in. (160 x 150.2 cm)
Executed in 2022.

Full Cataloguing

$400,000 - 600,000 

Sold for $1,079,500

Contact Specialist

Carolyn Kolberg
Associate Specialist, Head of Evening Sale, New York
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Modern & Contemporary Art Evening Sale

New York Auction 14 May 2024