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Painter Thierry Ona was born in Algeria on 31 January 1960 to Spanish-Algerian parents. Ona started his career as an artist in 1994, and drawing his inspirations from his North African origins.
Currently residing in France, Ona's works are an anthem of mysterious stick-like figures of half woman, half ant in various dancing poses against a backdrop of pigmented ochres, intense yellows and rich reds. The red represents African soil while ochre and yellow acts as a metaphor of the sun, with gold accentuating the sensation of heat.
Working with oil on canvas, Ona's paintings are characterised by the play of transparency and light. The stick-like figures are shrouded in secrecy with no faces or identifiable features, but they always appear leaping up from nowhere etched against the burning tones in Onas canvases. When they are not dancing, they sometimes appear as jazz musicians playing the saxophones in a nightclub, as seen in paintings like Bar Jazz and Jazz Band, or bullfighting matadors, a tribute to the artists Spanish background. But the setting never changes, and the characters in Ona's paintings are always set against the warm red and yellow background. The only other colours that Ona uses at times are electric fuschia and contrasting lime greens for the dresses that his literally stick-thin characters wear.
Since the beginning of his career, Ona has exhibited his paintings widely in France as well as internationally in New York, Osaka, and major cities in Switzerland and Belgium.
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