Winnipeg-based artist to speak on art, advocacy

Image and artwork provided by Yisa Akinbolaji.

This Saturday, Martha Street Studio is hosting a virtual artist talk with Winnipeg-based artist Yisa Akinbolaji.

Akinbolaji, whose career spans more than three decades, is an interdisciplinary artist who explores creative expression possibilities through a variety of mediums such as painting, sculpture and printmaking.

Born in Nigeria, Akinbolaji began his artistic journey by studying fine arts at the Yaba College of Technology and was published in Nigerian Artists: A Who’s Who and Bibliography. He immigrated to Canada in the ’90s and currently lives in Winnipeg.

This mixture of Yoruba-African roots and western education results in the ability to convey a wide range of emotions, perspectives and experiences in even just a single work.

However, his distinctive painting style and use of a flexible gum in his work put him on the map as an artist.

This technique, which he began developing in 1993, incorporates aspects of painting and printmaking to create something brand new that speaks directly to his own life experiences.

“My technique allows me to engage the viewers in the upside-down thinking process and discourse relating to each work,” Akinbolaji said in his artist statement.

As a widely published and exhibited artist, much of Akinbolaji’s work focuses on bringing attention to social issues both within Winnipeg’s community and globally, establishing his identity and subject matter through his distinctive style.

In addition to his artistic practice, Akinbolaji also works as a youth advocate, regularly presenting at high schools and summer camps in Winnipeg and the surrounding areas. Akinbolaji is also the founder of the Creative Foundation Inc., located in Winnipeg. This mentoring program empowers and motivates youth to strive for academic success.

Akinbolaji’s artist talk will take place via Zoom. It is free to attend and does not require attendees to download Zoom onto their device. The Zoom meeting ID will be shared the week before the event through social media.


Yisa Akinbolaji’s artist talk will take place virtually on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 2 p.m. Attendees who require ASL interpretation can contact Martha Street Studio at by Oct. 14 at 5 p.m. to request it.