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The composition of this drawing is dominated by the word ‘afro’, and the flowing lines which emanate from it. Closer examination reveals that the word is composed of tiny drawings of heads. Ofili revels in such visual puns. Underlying this work is Ofili’s response to the racist view that ‘all black people look the same’. The afro becomes a statement of black pride and, since each tiny head is different, a way to create individual portraits.

September 2004