Okoye Chukwuemeka John

Okoye Chukwuemeka John is a Nigerian based artist, born on the 13th of January 1997. He studied art at the University of Uyo, Uyo Akwa Ibom State Nigeria. Being a realistic painter has always made him feel he has a voice even when he is not there to talk about his art.

Over the years he has always been inspired by his emotions and those of individuals around him. Having engaged himself in different ways with people he has come to realize that everyone wants to be heard, everyone wants to say or talk about how they feel, but some can’t because no one is there to listen to them due to social, cultural, political, and historical issues. 

He sees his art as a voice for himself and all those who can’t voice how they feel. He uses thin and thick layers of paint to create illusions of people’s emotions, through their facial expressions and body gestures. His preferred mediums of expression are oil on canvas and charcoal on paper. Okoye Emeka trained under the realist master Dennis Ani.

Okoye’s debut group exhibition occurred in the fall of 2022, at Mitochondria Gallery, where he garnered attention from art critics and collectors from North America to Asia, and beyond. This lead to his first Museum exhibition at the Charles H Wright Museum of African American Art history, Detroit Michigan. Okoye’s artistic recognition continued to blossom as he was selected as one of the standout emerging artists to participate in the Thurgood Marshall College Fund benefit (Fall, 2022) which featured renowned artists such as Sam Gilliam, David Hockney, Roy Lichtenstein, Sarah Slappey, Derrick Adams, Kehinde Wiley, Amoako Boafo, and Jeff Koons. In the spring of 2023, an Untitled painting by Okoye was featured in Sotheby’s Modern and Contemporary African art at their London location. His debut solo exhibition “Such is Life”  at Mitochondria gallery, received major attention and excitement from the international scale. on May 13th, 2023.

Works by Okoye are part of private collections across Africa, North America, and Europe such as the prestigious CCH Pounder collection, Batra family collection, Hobdy Family collection, Ebert Collection, and Oluwole Omofemi collection.

Museum Exhibitions

okoye chukwuemeka john
DOUBLE ID: from CCH Pounder -Koné Collection. The Charles H Wright Museum of African American History. Detroit, Michigan.

Gallery Exhibitions


Studio Visit


Such Is Life. Mitochondria Gallery. Houston, Texas. 2023

Double ID. Charles H Wright Museum of African American History. Detroit. Michigan.

Strength in Unity. Mitochondria Gallery. Houston, TX. 2024.
In tender peaks, grace unfolds. Mitochondria gallery. Houston, Tx. 2024.
Place of Repose. Mitochondria Gallery. Houston, TX. 2023.
Multipolar: NADA Curated by Itzel Vargas Plata. Mexico City. 2023.
Modern and Contemporary African Art. Sotheby’s. London, U.K. 2023.
Thurgood Marshall College Benefit Fund. Artsy. New York. 2022.
Latitudes of Expression. Mitochondria Gallery. Houston, Texas. 2022.

Bachelor of Arts. University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom. 2021G

** Editors Note. Okoye Chukwuemeka John. Mitochondria Gallery. 2023