Barry Nzennaya

Painter | Nigeria

The cubist, abstract figurative expressionist paintings are his way of telling stories and showing beauty. He has been fascinated by the use of shapes and how they interact in creating forms and are being used in the expression of his imaginative prowess.⁠⠀

“The world is filled with lots of mess, let’s create beautiful art to cleanse it up.”⁠



Barry Ikechukwu Nzennaya was born in Lagos in 1983. He graduated from federal polytechnic Oko in Anambra State where he studied Fine and Applied Arts as best painting student with distinction in 2010 and worked as an established studio artist in Lagos since 2011. 

Contrary to many African painters, Nzennaya’s work carries little narrative but is a pure celebration of beauty of form, an escape of the daily human mess. Nzennaya is fascinated by the use of shapes and how they interact in creating forms and paints in a distinct cubistic style, sometimes purely abstract, but often with a recognizable figurative element and a lot of movement. His work has been influenced by his mentor, one of the most prolific Northern Nigerian painters Abdulsalam Abdulkareem famous for his horse paintings. Other main influences stem from Yusuf Grillo, Sam Ebohon, and the great European masters such as Pablo Picasso, George Braque, Paul Cezanne and Vincent Van Gogh.

Nzennaya has received recognition in Nigeria early on being awarded best emerging artist by the notorious Lagos Schapter of the Society of Nigerian Artists in 2017 and his work has been picked up by the main Nigerian auction houses. He exhibited recently in the Netherlands and is scheduled to be presented at various international art fairs across Europe.  

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Group exhibitions


Discovery Art Fair, international art fair, Frankfurt, Germany

Africa Now, OpenArtExchange, Schiedam, The Netherlands


SOGAL Art auction 

DreamVivid Exclusive Art gallery, Lagos, Nigeria  

Inside Life, Vivid Exclusive Art Gallery, Lagos, Nigeria  


Lagos Art auction  (TKMG )  

Illumination II, Terra Kulture. Lagos Nigeria  

Society of Nigerian Artist  (October Rain Exhibition) 


SOGAL Art auction  

Society of Nigerian Artist  (October Rain Exhibition)  

Union Bank centenary Art competition  


SOGAL Art auction  



Emerging Artist presented by Society of Nigerian Artist Lagos chapter Lagos state Nigeria

Other professional activities

  • Top ville group of school Ishawo Ikorodu Lagos State Nigeria 2013 – 2014 
  • Living stone College Ikorodu Lagos State Nigeria 2014 – 2017 
  • Goskia Group of school Ikorodu Lagos Nigeria 2016 – 2017  
  • Children summer Art class at Abdulsalam concept 2018  
  • Children summer Art class at Abdulsalam concept 2109 


  • Late Mr. Sammy Olagbaju (PrivateCollector) Lagos Nigeria 
  • Mr. & Mrs Egbuchunam (PrivateCollector) New York America      
  • Temple Muse Lagos Nigeria