Kenyan artist Paul Onditi’s richly layered multi-media paintings, somewhat reminiscent of Robert Rauschenberg’s collages, depict a solitary existence; a lonely struggle against the dizzying forces of change in the midst of a rapidly changing landscape that is presumably his hometown.
These forces are not native to Africa and thus his condition is a universal one. Spurred on by the similacra of our hyperreal society, these images depict the ephemerality of contemporary existence and ultimately are a commentary on illusion and reality. Here, Onditi displays the bewildering moments of disorientation when one realizes that fiction has overtaken reality, due to the seductive power of the similacrum, a shimmering beacon of light, allowing it to become more real than reality itself. This is after all, the core tenet of hyperreality.