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Yinka Shonibare RA

Yinka Shonibare studied at the Byam Shaw School of Art and Goldsmiths’ College. Shonibare’s West African heritage has been at the heart of his work since he started exhibiting in 1988, when he began using ‘Dutch-wax’ dyed fabrics, commonly found in Western Africa, both for wall-mounted works (as pseudo paintings) and for sculpted figures. He was a Turner prize nominee in 2004 and awarded the decoration of Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

He was notably commissioned by Okwui Enwezor At Documenta 10 in 2002 to create his most recognised work Gallantry and Criminal Conversation that launched him on an international stage. He has exhibited at the Venice Biennial and internationally at leading museums worldwide. In September 2008, his major mid-career survey commenced at the MCA Sydney and toured to the Brooklyn Museum, New York in June 2009 and the Museum of African Art at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC in October 2009.

In 2010, he won the Wollaston Award for his work Crash Willy in the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition and Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle became his first public art commission on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square.


Royal Academician


Born: 1962 in London, England, United Kingdom

Nationality: British

Elected RA: 24 September 2013

Gender: Male

Visit Yinka Shonibare RA's website

Preferred media: Sculpture

Works by Yinka Shonibare in the RA Collection

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Works associated with Yinka Shonibare in the RA Collection

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