INTERVIEW: Meet Emmanuel Oryiman, the multifaceted artist making waves in Jos

 INTERVIEW: Meet Emmanuel Oryiman, the multifaceted artist making waves in Jos

In the city of Jos, Plateau state, Nigeria, amidst the academic corridors of the Open University, Emmanuel Oryiman, affectionately known as Gilbert Supreme, is not just a student of Business Administration but a multifaceted visionary breaking barriers in the realm of visual arts. As a 200-level student, Emmanuel is already making waves as a visual artist, speed painter, writer, and the CEO and founder of Black & Bold Africa.

Emmanuel’s journey into speed painting began in 2016 with abstract brush strokes on stage, a humble genesis that has since evolved into capturing realistic and iconic figures within minutes. Reflecting on his inspiration, Emmanuel shares, “I wanted to use this medium to express myself visually and within just a little time on stage. Standing out was important to me.”

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Like any artist, Emmanuel’s path to mastery hasn’t been devoid of setbacks. Recalling a particularly challenging performance, he remarks, “There’s a performance I did at a certain time. The invitation came in two days to the event so I barely had much time to practice. My performance that day was a total failure. No resemblance to the figure I intended to paint. That thought was shameful, but it also taught me a lesson.”

Yet, amidst the setbacks, Emmanuel’s perseverance shines through. “The process of growth requires patience, practice, brooding, and trusting,” he says. “There are times you feel like you’re making just little or no progress at all but seeing that you’re no longer where you used to be is itself a motivation.”

Through his art, Emmanuel has transcended boundaries, connecting with people and cultures far beyond his hometown. “A Man’s gift opens doors for him and brings him before Kings,” he quotes Proverbs. His performances have graced stages within and outside the state, with some of his paintings finding homes in Nigeria, the United States, and beyond.

However, Emmanuel acknowledges the challenges that come with pursuing his passion, particularly in a region where art appreciation and patronage are not always prevalent. “Finances and lack of appreciation are hurdles,” he reveals. “I’ve got a lot of ideas but need funds to execute them. Also, there is hardly much appreciation/patronage of art with high value here in Jos.”

Looking to the future, Emmanuel is undeterred, with ambitious plans to expand his reach and impact. “From now to 5 years to come, I’m intending to hold exhibitions yearly,” he shares. “I’m hoping to feature some of my works in galleries outside the country and host speed painting events within and outside the state.” His commitment to nurturing talent is evident as he mentions, “I have 4 people who are learning under me.”

Emmanuel Oryiman’s story is not just one of artistic prowess but of resilience, determination, and a relentless pursuit of excellence. From the classrooms of the Open University to the global stage, he is painting a vibrant legacy that transcends borders and inspires generations to come.

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