Born in Cameroon, West Africa, Shiri Achu and her family immigrated to London when she was a child where she found her passion for art and started painting at a tender age of 9 years old. Today she actively paints and exhibits around the world and has studios in Cameroon, the UK and in the USA, where she is currently based. Her preferred mediums are acrylics and mixed media.
Inspired by her travels, Shiri believes “Art comes from, unsurprising, yet unexpectedly vivid moments, times, places and objects. I aim to capture the spirit of my subjects and make them come alive through form, colour, texture and tone.”
Ten years ago, Shiri’s first solo exhibition, The 30th Act, a success story, took place at St Augustine’s tower in Hackney. From there, she has been invited to exhibit, to speak and to educate at various places, events and cities around the world. Some of these include, The Commonwealth Secretariat, The Houses of Parliament, The Olympic African Village in London, art seminars and networking speaking events in Washington DC and Delaware. Travels with her art have included Chiang Mai, Lisbon, Toronto, Barcelona, Douala, Adelaide, Kingston and Toronto to name but a few.
Through her ‘InPrint’ annual series of exhibitions, Shiri picks a focal destination city to exhibit her art. The initial event, 35InPrint:LONDON took place from 19th – 25th April 2014 at The Strand Gallery in Central London. 36InPrint:DC took place from 5th – 14th May 2016 at Gallery A in Central Washington DC. 37InPrint:AUSTRALIA took place from 14th July – 23rd July 2016 at Mama Jambo in Australia. 38InPrint:JAMAICA took place from 25th August – 8th September 2017 at the regional headquarters of the University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica, and most recently 39InPrint:TORONTO, which took place from 30th November – 4th December 2018 at Ariilon, Toronto, Canada.
One of the aims of Shiri Achu Art is to showcase and promote African culture worldwide. Shiri finds beauty in the woman carrying her baby on her back whilst going her way. She finds beauty in the grandmother preparing ‘atchu’ in her dark smoky outdoor kitchen for her grandchildren. She finds beauty in the African patterned fabrics. She finds beauty, envy even, in the young girl climbing a tree. As such, she paints these images. Shiri’s paintings reflect the beautiful simplicity of Africa and she offers this to the world to promote, enlighten and increase understanding of the culture and the people.
Her awards include “Best Artist in Brent”, by The Brent Council, London, UK. Shiri was nominated as “TOP 10 Artist at Artomatic” 2016. The USA Art critic, Lennox Campello said of Shiri’s work: “Powerful African Art in a marriage of contemporary skills with strong African imagery”. Shiri also received an award as a distinguished fellow of African Art and Culture (FAAC).
Who owns her art?
Prominent public figures like Africa’s Cameroonian football legend Roger Milla, Grammy award-winning American singers Brandy and Faith Evans, British actor James Faulkner, British soul singer (MBE) Omar, Cameroon makossa legendary musicians: Papa Salle John, Sam Fan Thomas and Prince Ndedi Eyango; Ghanaian politician, daughter of Kwame Nkrumah, Samia Nkrumah; Jamaican living legend Mutabaruka; singers: Angelique Kidjo, Erykah Badu and Soul Queen Angie Stone.
Shiri Achu Art is also owned by many other collectors who buy from her website, at art fairs, group and exhibitions and also from those who buy from The Smithsonian, the museum store of National Museum of African Art.
Ten years later, full circle, Shiri Achu is thrilled to return to London, where it all began, to exhibit again with her 10th-anniversary exhibition, The 40th Act!
This 10th Anniversary Exhibition, The 40th Act, consists of 30 framed and signed Limited Editions of Shiri Achu Art Prints, and 10 original pieces. Visitors and art collectors will have the privilege to purchase these signed, limited edition prints at affordable prices. The 10 original pieces will be available for purchase too.
4 days – schedule of events:
Day 1 – Thursday 8th: 5pm-10pm – Private Viewing – Music by Muntu Valdo
Day 2 – Friday 9th: 5pm-10pm – Opening Party – Music by Muntu Valdo
On Muntu Valdo
Muntu Valdo, is a jazz guitarist, harmonica player, and singer from Doula, Cameroon. He has performed with Ali Farka Toure, Manu Dibango, Richard Bona, Lokua Kanza, Eko Roosevelt, Lionel & Stephane Belmondo, Keziah Jones, and Alpha Blondy, and has played at Womad music festivals https://www.muntuvaldo.co.uk/
Day 3 – Saturday10th: 10am – 10pm
10am: Breakfast and Presentations
12pm: African dancing and singers
3pm: Exhibition & building tour led by Shiri Achu
6pm: “Hate Me To Know Me” – Book signing with Poet, Iggy Mizuh
This new collection of poetry from author and journalist Iggy Mizuh covers a wide variety of themes, probing the heart of the human condition. Whether he is lamenting humanity’s obsession with material things in “Slow it down,” or examining his own relationships in the titular “Hate me to know me,” Mizuh infuses his work with refreshing honesty. While he admits that everyone can have a cynical side, he finds inspiration and beauty in the smallest of moments.
Never is this clearer than in “Fish alive without life,” a poem chronicling the struggle of one fish to return to the water. As Mizuh watches the small fish gasp and strive, he can’t help but become entranced by the drama unfolding in front of him. As the fish finally finds its escape, Mizuh takes it as a positive sign of the ingenuity and strength that can be found in the smallest of creatures. Other poems, like “I will survive,” transfer that optimism to his life.
From dramatic storms to heartbreaking losses, Mizuh examines the many obstacles people face and then explores all the ways we can keep moving forward with increased awareness of the beauty and poetry all around us.
Book front cover, painting by Shiri Achu Art.
8pm: Party Party Party!
Day 4 – Sunday 11th: 10am-1pm
9am: Breakfast and Presentation by Shiri Achu
11am: Exhibition & building tour to be led by Shiri Achu
12pm: 10 competition winners announced at the closing of
‘The 40th Act’ Exhibition.
P.S – Competition rules will be announced on Thursday, 8th August.