Solange Umutoni is an abstract painter born in 1972 in Kigali, Rwanda. She has a B.A. in Art History and French Literature from the University of Kigali Rwanda. In1994 she escaped the genocide in Rwanda and went to work for the United Nations in war-torn countries like Croatia and Liberia. In 1997 she came to New York as a refugee and applied for political asylum. During this time she started painting and then enrolled at the Art Student League to learn technique and follow in the footsteps of the American Abstract Expressionists Pollock, De Kooning and Rothko who attended the school.
In 2006 after a transformative trip immersing herself in the vibrant East Berlin art scene, she started working in a studio in Long Island City and showing in group shows with prominent curators. She was discovered by Jeffrey Deitch in 2008 who included her work in a group show at Miami Art Basel of 30 NewYork Downtown Emerging Artist.
Umutoni 's work is very intense and expressive. Her paintings command attention by enticing the viewer to investigate the deep current of emotional threads woven throughout the work evident in the faces of her abstracted figures. Her work is a statement on social injustice, extreme global violence and above all the transformation of the trauma, she has experienced into striking beauty.
2017: Inclusive Exclusif at Beautique midtown curated by Clare Wilderson
2011: Mirror of Continous Change, 30 International Artist curated by Fre ilgen
Taekwang Industries Cultural Center Korea Seoul
2010: Leisure at Lower Eastside Art Alliance curated by LeeVasu owner of Dacia Gallery
2009: Vector 2 at MaxProtech Gallery in Chelsea 25 Emerging Artist curated by Peter Gregorio from Vector Journal
2008: It Ain't Fair at OHWOW Art Basel Miami,30 New York Downtown Emerging Artist curated by Deitch Project
2007: KiptonArt Artist group show at McGuire Design showroom midtown curated by Kipton Cronkite
2006: End of Year Student group show at the Art Student League
2003: InsideOut at Riverside drive penthouse curated by Steven Lynch
2011: Mirror of Continous change Seoul Korea Art Newspapers
2009: Vector Journal Imagine being born in Rwanda
2008: New York Times it Ain't fair at OHWOW Miami