Sam Ovraiti

Ovraiti’s style centres around his use of colour. Known as the most expressive artist of his time, he popularizes the use of chalk pastels and watercolour paintings. These watercolour paintings express reality through careful control and tenderness towards the medium, while often depicting Fulani women or local folklore themes. On the other hand, his oil paintings express complexity through their layers. These differing techniques exemplify his talent and ability to create expression.

Ovraiti has received multiple prestigious awards for excellence, including in 2004 the Guinness Top Three Award for Contemporary Artist in Nigeria. His works are shown in several galleries across Nigeria, Europe and the United States of America.


Higher National Diploma in Painting, Federal Polytechnic Auchi, Nigeria 1983

Masters in Fine Arts – Painting, University of Benin, Nigeria 1999


2006 modernafricanart exhibition at BTJ, Lund, Sweden

2006 modernafricanart exhibition at Mklarhuset Hellborg & Partners, Lund, Sweden

2005 Quintessence Gallery, Lagos, Nigeria

2004 Galleria Romania, (annual pastel exhibition), Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria

2003 Agbaro-otor 2002, 4th harmattan workshop exhibition, Lagos, Nigeria

2003 African Passage, Air gallery, London, UK

2003 Total Fine Art Exposition, Lagos, Nigeria

2003 Addax Oil (Tola & Ovraiti), Lagos

2003 Mydrim Gallery (annual pastel exhibition), Lagos, Nigeria

2002 Agbaro-otor 2001, 3rd harmattan workshop exhibition, Lagos, Nigeria

2001 National Council for Art & Culture, History 25 years Collection, Lagos, Nigeria

2001 History of Contemporary Art in Nigeria, Monson Centre, Lagos, Nigeria

2001 Nicole Peck exposition, Elf Village, Port-Harcourt, Nigeria

2001 Ash Bert Marquee, Polo Club Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria

2001 Velvety Dreams, an exhibition of pastel paintings, Mydami Galleryy, Lagos, Nigeria

2000 Weibciche genital verstummelung, a female circumcision in Nigeria the suffering, the sorrow, the set back, Germany

2000 Behind the wall, Vermillion Gallery, Galleria Romania Gallery Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria

2000 Take one woman, Gallery Whitelays, London, UK

2000 Office of the future, Andersen Consulting, Lagos, Nigeria

2000 Female circumcision in Nigeria, Jubilee Room, Palace of Westminster, British Parliament, London, UK

2000 Ovuomaroro Harmattan Exhbition, Aina Onabolu Building, National Theatre, Lagos, Nigeria

1999 Female Genital Mutilation Exhibition, USA

1999 Four Nigeria Artists, Lagos Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria

1998 Inaugural Exhibition, B & C Gallery, Apapa, Lagos, Nigeria

1998 Halis Ventures & Brech Land Estate Exposition 98  Exhibition of paintings and sculptures, Lagos, Nigeria

1998 Leventis Foundation, Colour Masters Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria

1998 Nicole Pick Exposition of Nigeria Art, Elf Village, Port-Harcourt, Nigeria

1997 Auchi School, Nimbus Gallery, Lagos, Nigeria

1995 Nigeria Contemporary Art, Texaco Overseas, Lagos, Nigeria