A boy from Africa draws people with such precision that they cannot be distinguished from a photograph

Positive Schwingungen

In the poorest and most populous Nigeria lives a talented young artist, Karim Waris Olamilkan. His paintings amaze me with their authenticity, they are more like black-and-white photos, just as expressive and emotional.

Karim was born in a poor village, and none of his relatives had creative abilities. He started drawing at the age of six, first cartoon images, then portraits of friends and relatives.

When the boy was eight years old, he and his family moved to town. One of his new acquaintances studied at the Academy of Fine Arts and invited Karim to an open lesson.

An eight-year-old boy sat in a corner and, together with older pupils, began to draw a composition from a teapot and headphones placed next to him.

The work of the little one impressed the teacher so much that after a few days, the question of his admission to the Ayowola Art Academy was resolved.

Due to the family’s poverty, Karim had to save money to secretly buy paints, pencils, and drawing paper for his relatives. He could only create at night, by the light of a flashlight.

Today, his works are exhibited alongside the paintings of professional masters. Critics find that for his age, Karim has a deep judgment about life beyond his years, which is embodied in his paintings.

One of his most striking and poignant works is the ‚Daily Bread‘ self-portrait. Today, Karim is thirteen years old, he has already decided on the direction of his work and has the opportunity to earn money with his talent.

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