Paul Lewin’s Art is Inspired By African Folklore

Paul Lewin’s paintings carry within them a symbolic meaning, though the symbols themselves are hard to decipher. “I’m not always sure of the meaning behind each piece, but I’m also not too concerned about that either,” he writes on his website. Dedicated to the process of painting itself, Lewin compares it to an act of meditation. “I love getting lost in the details,” he says. “It can be very similar to meditation. I love the concept of the artist as the conduit. Transcribing visions onto a canvas.”

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Village Spirits

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His visions are greatly inspired by genres like Afrofuturism and Caribbean and African folklore, but also sci-fi. “Each piece has its own story to tell and for different viewers, the story might change,” he writes. “I try not to interfere too much with that process. I try to let each piece evolve on its own.”

Born in Kingston, Jamaica, he moved to the US with his family when he was only 4 years old. But African culture still holds a great place in his art and life. “My childhood home was filled with paintings, sculptures, and artifacts of many different cultures from around the world,” he recalled. “These works, along with my love of sci-fi and fantasy art, inspired a lot of my early creativity.”

Aside from art, Lewin also draws from his father’s love of storytelling. “I loved listening to his stories of the old country in Jamaica while we worked. He also taught me a lot about ancient societies, science, and history.” Now Lewin tells his stories the way he sees and understands them, through painting. Here are some of his artworks:

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New work…

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