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Kip Omolade press
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Crozier "Gold Standard" ad appearing in Art in America, April, 2017

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Art at Viacom presents Kip Omolade + Diovadiova Chrome, January 29th 2017

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The Huffington Post, January 30th, 2017

"You'll need sunglasses to look at the magical pigments of these beauties!"

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Daily Trust Newspaper, Art & Ideas Section, January 22nd, 2017

   

"I'm carrying on an African tradtion."

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Collosal, January 9, 2017

"Kip Omolade creates large-scale oil paintings of chrome masks, depicting not only the subtle details of female faces, but incorporating the reflected environment of each piece.."

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Africa Rising (Gestalten Publishing), October, 2016

"Kip Omolade's...chrome faces reference Benin masks and Ife bronze heads, and then immediately displaces them. Rather than displaying these as sculptures, Omolade recreates them in hyperrealistic oil paintings, bathed in vibrant color."

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Konbini, October 7, 2016

"Kip Omolade creates the dopest, most colorful hyper-realistic oil paintings and chrome masks celebrating the beauty of African features."

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The Definition of Fantasia album cover featured on Good Morning America, July 25, 2016

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okayafrica, June 27, 2016

"Having come of age in NYC during the formative years of hip-hop in the 80s, even attending the same alternative arts high school Jean-Michel Basquiat graduated from years prior, mixed media artist Kip Omolade’s Diovadiova Chrome paintings and masks are truly something special to behold."

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Georgie Magazine, May 10, 2016

"Kip Omolade is an American artist from Harlem, New York, with a background in graffiti art and a BFA from Manhattan’s School of Visual Arts. His latest series, Diovadiova Chrome, is a sequence of hyperrealistic oil paintings depicting massive chrome masks. Omolade casts these masks himself, which he then uses as a model for his paintings. The end result is a fascinating hybrid of African tradition and contemporary materials. We spoke to Omolade about Benin masks, Paris Hilton, and the meaning of chrome, “the poor man’s silver.”"

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The Definition of Fantasia album cover, April 22, 2016

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VICE: The Creator's Project, February 28, 2016

"Though a politically correct approach to beauty politics reigns in public discourse, the veneer is a thin one. Scratch it, and all kinds of horrifying stuff emerges—like the recent incident in which a model was made the subject of racist attacks on Mac Cosmetics' Instagram because a photo showcased her full lips. So the works of Kip Omolade—hyperrealistic paintings of chrome face masks of black subjects—are especially poignant, stark celebrations of black features." 

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Style Biblio, Winter 2016

"His paintings are modern interpretations of luxury themes such as beauty, high quality materials, precious stones and jewels."

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The RYB Gallery, November 30, 2015

"With roots as a graffiti artist and a background with Marvel, he combines both worlds with his futuristic and authentically dreamy visuals."

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Juxtapoz, November 4, 2015

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Super Sonic Art, October 29, 2015

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Issue No. 206, October 28, 2015

"Kip Omolade paints captivating, hyperrealistic portraits based on African sculptures exploring immortality through a luxury-branding motif." 

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Farenheit / Excelsior Magazine, May 17, 2015

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iARTistas Magazine, May 2015, Issue 15

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Bl!sss Magazine, March 2015, Issue 91

Interview: Liz Rice McCray

Will you tell us about your photorealistic paintings and chrome sculptures?
I think I should by stating that my paintings and sculptures are part of a larger context called Diovadiova. Diovadiova is composed of the words, dio (the Italian word for god) and diva (the Greek word for goddess) and its meaning is togetherness.

My Diovadiova Chrome oil paintings study color, psychology and contemporary notions of beauty using a highly detailed yet minimalist style. The Diovadiova Chrome sculptures explore immortality through a luxury-branding motif. Together my paintings and sculptures look at the universal masks we all wear in society.

Would you say the process is labor-intensive? Will you give some insight and explain the steps of creating these paintings?
Yes, the process is labor-intensive and involves making a mold of each model’s face, reworking the cast plaster sculpture, producing a version in resin and adding a chrome layer with artificial eyelashes. The final sculpture then serves as a model for the hyper-realistic oil painting. I compare the process to historical life/death masks that were originally reserved for the famous and infamous. However, with Diovadiova Chrome, I am using women of color, who are usually ignored in Western art when it comes to subjects of beauty.

Can you tell us a little bit about your childhood and your original attraction to art?
One of my first attractions to art was a Spider Man meets Man-Wolf comic book my mother gave me when I was about 6 years old. I didn’t make the connection that Peter Parker was Spider Man and because he wore a mask, I could imagine myself taking his place. At the same time, I realized the action and drama was created by a bunch of drawings. As a result, I was inspired to be a comic book artist. In spite of this, a Marvel Comics internship shifted my views as I became more interested in underground comics, which allowed more freedom and ownership.

What are some of your consistent influences?
My influences include Takashi Murakami, Lisa Yuskavage and Rembrandt, but I describe my Diovadiova Chrome paintings as “Andy Warhol meets Jeff Koons meets Essence magazine”.

You were born in New York? What neighborhood would you call home and why?
I was born in Harlem, but spent most of my life in Flatbush, Brooklyn. As a teenager in the 80’s, I was fortunate enough to be a part of the birth of Hip Hop movement where there was an explosion of talent everywhere. My friends and I would rap, break-dance, DJ and do graffiti everyday. In fact, many of my sensibilities as an artist come from a Hip Hop approach where you don’t limit yourself by labels; you just express yourself to the fullest.

Where can people check out your art?
I am expecting some upcoming shows this year so readers can check my website www.kipomolade.com for updates.

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions.  

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Beautiful/Decay, February 21, 2015

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Hi-Fructose, February 5, 2015

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Juxtapoz, January 30, 2015

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Booooooom, January 29, 2015