Though Anigbo has exhibited works at the Cotuit Center for the Arts, the defunct Wilson Gallery in Dennis, and the Provincetown Art Association and Museum, the Barnstable artist has never given much priority to exhibiting his work. It is the process of creating art that compels him like nothing else. “Painting just feels like the most direct way to vividly express emotion and tell the truth about something you want others to hear, even if I never get to show it to anyone,” he says.
Anigbo was born in Nigeria and lived there until he attended college in Connecticut, where he studied computer software per his parents’ wishes. He taught himself how to paint by studying books, frequenting museums, and analyzing works by Monet, Degas, and other impressionists. A 1999 trip to The Museo del Prado in Madrid inspired Anigbo to adopt a new style. “You can’t do what Velázquez, Rubens, and Goya did with impressionism. You just can’t,” Anigbo says.
He relearned his craft and honed his style while taking computer software jobs that brought him from Hartford, Connecticut to rural Vermont to Cape Cod. Though he had no intention of staying on the Cape for very long, he met his future wife, Karen, who spent summers in West Yarmouth. Thirteen years later, he’s still here. Cape Cod provides Anigbo with a beautiful and relatively quiet place to live and work. “If I were to move away from here now, I’d have to move far away from New England because no place around here is as good,” he says. In many ways, the Cape is an escape from the reality that he paints, writes, and thinks about.