"Being Free" by Deborah Segun

"Being Free" by Deborah Segun

Deborah Segun’s “Being Free“ exhibition curated by SMO Contemporary Art and supported by Billecart Salmon opens at Temple Muse this weekend and runs until 31st October 2020.
Trauma Bonding 2020 Acrylic on canvas 140cm by 200cm

Deborah Segun is a multidisciplinary artist based in Lagos, Nigeria. She obtained a degree in Fashion Design at the Polimoda Institute of Fashion Design and Marketing in Florence, Italy in 2017. During her studies in fashion, she translated her own art production into clothing, creating conceptual and sculptural wearable pieces.

 Deborah Segun


Deborah’s works can be described as a mix between cubism and abstraction; she takes a playful, purist approach to her work by focusing on form rather than detail, through the use of different artistic mediums. Her works are mainly figurative with a focus on portraiture. The inspiration behind her works stem from her personal and shared experiences as a woman, as well as observations of any given space she occupies at a time. She tries to capture these experiences through her unique and experimental use of colours and shapes, which she believes creates a sense of simplicity and calmness out of a rather complex scenario. She exaggerates the figures or displaces them, as she believes it is her own way of confronting how she sees things. She also likes to isolate shapes from the subjects/objects and put them together to create a new composition.

I just want peace 2020 Acrylic on canvas 120cm by 150cm

Being Free celebrates the diverse bodies of women through shape and colour, portraiture and narrative, creating an important counter-point to society’s patriarchal notions of an “ideal woman”. Combining abstraction and figuration, Segun recomposes shapes to create voluptious figures in varied, graceful poses which celebrate the subject and imbue the viewer with a deep sense of admiration.

Body Dysmorphia 2020 Pencil and oil pastel on paper 62cm by 91cm


In her paintings, her subjects maintain a steady and relaxed gaze which represents a shift in focus from typical male-centered standards of beauty. Segun’s work is a step towards claiming a new sense of freedom through art.