Artist Moyosore Martins’ Tips For Choosing Art For A Home

Bad Friends, 2021.

Moyosore Martins, also known as Moyo to his friends, family, and fans, is an incredibly talented New York-based artist whose paintings reflect his fascinating life. Born to Brazillian parents and raised in Nigeria, his work is inspired by his family’s tribal roots, and upbringing along with his love of fashion, his college years in Ghana and the Ivory Coast, as well as his world travels. Martins’ work has been shown at several galleries, including Path Gallery in Los Angeles and Traffic Arts and Heath Gallery in New York.

moyosore martins on an orange couch with flame pants

Martins’ work has been shown at several galleries including Path Gallery in Los Angeles and Traffic Arts and Heath Gallery in New York. (Photography by Bowen Fernie)

I recently spoke with Martins about what inspired him to become an artist, his creative process, the best way to choose art for your home and so much more.

What inspires you to create art?

It’s a calling and an obsession. It’s how I find my own voice. Creating is a spiritual relief for me as a human and in order for me to perform well as a person, I must produce. I find inspiration from the life I live and the world around me. I tend to observe and consume the energy that I am receiving. In other ways, I usually paint from premonitions, dreams, visions, and nostalgic experiences. 

How did you decide to become a professional artist?

It was something I have always longed to be as a child. I didn’t have opportunities to create art at that time because my dad wanted me to study science. I made a promise to become what I wanted to be. What makes me happy is creating. 

What was the first piece you sold?

The first piece I sold was called the Watchman, which I made in 2017. 

moyosore martins large canvas painting

Martins observes a canvas in his studio. (Photography by Bowen Fernie)

Tell me about your most recent show in Los Angeles?

It was just as I had envisioned it. The combination of art, food, and people, was a celebration of nostalgic feelings, which is also the theme of the exhibition, Iranti (Nostalgia).

The collective of diptychs, sculptures, and mixed media canvases consist of layers of oil paints, scratches, and messages that are meant to give an experience of nostalgia through the artist’s point of view. It was amazing to have so many people attend and connect with the works as it relates to their own remembrance of memories. I enjoyed explaining the works to people and allowing them to have their own experience with them. This was my first solo exhibition and the show is on display through November 14th, at Path Galleries in Los Angeles. 

Do you have advice for anyone buying art? 

Buy and collect what you love and connect to. It’s important to understand the artist’s journey and make appropriate research about what is being created and why. It is very simple and complex. Always remember to choose things that appeal to your personal interests because it should be an intimate experience. 

moyo art piece tribal figures walking

The layers and messages within his art are intended to “give an experience of nostalgia through the artist’s point of view,” Martins says.

How do you know you’re choosing the right art to buy?

A great place to start is through galleries, agents, representatives, and private collectors of the artist. True fans of an artist become avid collectors and the best place to learn about an artist and purchase authentic works to begin your own collection. 

When decorating a home, is it best to choose furniture first or art? 

There are no rules when it comes to home design. At the end of the day, everything needs to be in relation to each other and make sense within the space. Home decor has to work around a theme that carries design functionality and comfortability. Without these things, one’ s space won’t serve its purpose. A style, such as 950s/1960’s mid-century, post-Modern, African, or Victorian, will help articulate what to select, purchase and arrange for a certain aesthetic. 

When it comes to pairing art and furniture, Martins believes “there are no rules” and “everything needs to be in relation to each other.” (Photography by Bowen Fernie)

What’s next for you?

I returned from my first solo exhibition in Los Angeles like I had never left. I’m always working around the clock because there are so many dreams and not enough time. Creating for me is constant and can happen at any hour of the day or evening. I’m looking forward to doing more shows for people to come and experience my artworks in person and partnering with like-minded brands and people to bring inspiring ideas to life. 

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I am a writer, design expert, host of the podcast Bougie Adjacent, and comedic performer. I am absolutely fascinated by all aspects of décor and design. It once took me six months to choose a soap dispenser and I can’t even remember what it looked like. I like bright prints, southern exposure and any location you can call a “village or town.” There are currently over 100 episodes of House Hunters on my DVR.