Chris Ofili The Upper Room (Installation, Victoria Miro Gallery, June 2002) 1999–2002

Chris Ofili
The Upper Room (Installation, Victoria Miro Gallery, June 2002) 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image:courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Lyndon Douglas

Chris Ofili Mono Amarillo 1999–2002

Chris Ofili 
Mono Amarillo 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

Chris Ofili Mono Blanco 1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Blanco 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

Chris Ofili Mono Gris,1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Gris 1999–2002

Chris Ofili Mono Marron,1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Marron 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

Chris Ofili Mono Naranja, 1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Naranja 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

Chris Ofili Mono Negro,1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Negro 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

Chris Ofili Mono Verde 1999–2002

Chris Ofili
Mono Verde 1999–2002
© Chris Ofili   Image: courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London   Photo: Stephen White

In a deliberate change of pace, Ofili painted a number of more meditative paintings based on an Andy Warhol collage of a monkey holding a chalice. These developed into The Upper Room 1999–2002. The Christian symbolism of the Last Supper fuses with that of other faiths such as the Hindu monkey god Hanuman, and invites multiple interpretations. Ofili collaborated with the architect David Adjaye to create an enclosed environment that enhances the spiritual atmosphere of these paintings.

It was important for the space to feel akin to a space of worship and to experience the kind of feelings you get when you walk in to a place like that. I wondered if that was possible, and whether paintings could enhance that feeling.
Chris Ofili, in ‘Ekow Eshun interviews Chris Ofili’, Chris Ofili exhibition catalogue, Tate Britain 2010

We hoped the architecture and the experience of looking at the artwork were meshed together and that you are not differentiating between one and the other.
David Adjaye, BP British Art Lecture at Tate Britain, 2005