Tagsmart weekly discovery: Arteh Odjidja’s photographic narratives

Born and bred in London and influenced by his father who worked in filmmaking, Arteh Odjidja realised at a young age he was destined for a career in the arts. In 2004, Odjidja completed a degree in Graphic Design at the LCC University of the Arts but soon discovered his love for photography and storytelling.


His keen eye for composition and passion for bespoke couture naturally led him to specialise in fashion, portrait and documentary photography. Having worked with some of the world’s most recognised brands, including Paul Smith and Montblanc, his innate bond to the arts however eventually led him to take up personal projects as well.

His first exhibition, Stranger in Moscow, was on display at Ozwald Boateng’s Saville Row store in 2013. The series shines a light on a young man’s story, and highlights the feelings of displacement and vulnerability felt by so many living in foreign environments. The social struggles faced by such people have defined the modern world we live in.


He has since exhibited his work extensively in America and the UK, been featured in numerous industry publications such as Black+White Photography, The British Journal of Photography and The Photoworks annual.

Most recently, Odjidja’s Art of Monochrome series was featured in the Dandy Lion, The Black Dandy and Street Style book by Shantrelle P. Lewis, Leica UK and Aperture Foundation, alongside Hassan Hajjaj, Joshua Kissi, Travis Gumbs and Omar Victor Diop.


On September 30, the photographer will present the Monochrome Street Portraits – Black and White Portrait Photography workshop at the Imago Fotokunst, Berlin. Teaching participants how to create a portrait narrative and achieve dynamic black and white portraits on location, the masterclass draws inspiration from his successful ongoing STRANGER series, which profiles young migrants in cities around the world.


Picasso works stolen from German collection

Several artworks, including 11 lithographs by Pablo Picasso, were stolen from the corporate collection of Portigon AG, a financial services company from North Rhine-Westphalia.

Portigon was formed in 2012 as the legal successor WestLB, the Western German state Bank. A spokesperson for the company confirmed the theft this past Friday in Düsseldorf.