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Night Flight of Dread and Delight (work of art)

Información sobre la obra de arte

56 5/8 x 62 5/8 inches (143.8 x 159.1 centimeters) Frame:
59 1/4 x 66 x 3 inches (150.5 x 167.6 x 7.6 centimeters)


Comprado con fondos de la Sociedad de Arte del Estado de Carolina del Norte (legado de Robert F. Phifer)

Número de objeto

Key Ideas

  • Two winged, wide-eyed, brown animal figures, one with the face of a cat and the other with the face of an owl, rise upward in the center of this painting. The background is a dark sky filled with stars and overlapping layers of blue and brown geometric shapes and patterns that merge with the two animal forms.
  • This painting incorporates ideas of “afro-metaphysics,” a new type of Black spirituality from before Afrofuturism, a movement in art and literature that imagines a future for Africa and Black people, usually with technology and other sci-fi-like themes.
  • Alexander “Skunder” Boghossian was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Armenian and Ethiopian parents. He studied in London and lived in Paris and Ethiopia before settling in the United States in 1972. 
  • Boghossian’s firsthand experience of African diasporas (the communities of people of African descent dispersed throughout the world as a result of the slave trade), European surrealism (an art movement exploring dreams), and Pan-Africanism (the movement for a unified African culture) influenced his work. 
  • Global influences such as Ethiopian scrolls, wall paintings, and European techniques also feature heavily in Boghossian’s work.

Más información

Born in Ethiopia, Skunder Boghossian grew up immersed in the country’s tradition of Christian religious painting. That heritage was complicated and expanded by the artist’s years studying art in London and Paris, where he was exposed to surrealism and its fascination with dreams and metamorphosis. Night Flight of Dread and Delight, which Boghossian painted in Paris, reveals this influence.

Like many surrealist works, the painting was inspired by literature, in this case the novels of Nigerian writer Amos Tutuola. Tutuola’s books tell stories of spirit beings, supernatural forces, and mystical transformations. Boghossian’s work was influenced by his family background, European modernism, and the Pan-African movement, which encouraged African artists to be inspired by the creativity of the entire continent.

tags: constellation, animals, meaning, place, subjectivity, stars

Recursos adicionales

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  • Pintura al óleo con dos figuras de animales alados, de ojos grandes y marrones, una con cara de gato y la otra con cara de búho. El fondo es un cielo oscuro lleno de estrellas y capas superpuestas de formas y patrones geométricos azules y marrones que se funden con las dos formas animales.

    Night Flight of Dread and Delight