Toyin Ojih Odutola: A Countervailing Theory

November 19, 2021 – April 3, 2022

“Imitation Lesson; Her Shadowed Influence” from A Countervailing Theory (2019), © Toyin Ojih Odutola, courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Independence Ave. at 7th St., SW
Washington, DC

Second Floor, Inner Ring

See on Map Floor Plan

A Countervailing Theory is a major exhibition of work by Toyin Ojih Odutola (born Ile-Ife, Nigeria, 1985). The exhibition features a recent body of work in the form of a monumental cycle of 40 large-scale, monochromatic drawings that chronicle a myth conceived by the artist. The installation spans the entirety of the museum’s circular inner galleries on its second floor, nearly 400 linear feet.

Ojih Odutola is known for investigating the relationship between drawing and storytelling, using materials such as pastel, charcoal, and chalk to communicate elaborate, fictional narratives of her own creation. With this series, she explores how mark-making can open up pathways to new meanings. By fluidly shifting between the imaginary and the real, Ojih Odutola incorporates an unconventional approach to drawing material and surface, specifically working with white and grey materials on a black ground.

Ojih Odutola’s work is accompanied by Ghanaian-British conceptual sound artist Peter Adjaye’s cinematic immersive soundscape, “Ceremonies Within.”