Solo Exhibition


Introvert & Extrovert (2017) Kemba Opio


7 March –  1 April 2019

Opening Reception: Thursday 7 March 2019 (6 – 9 pm) Second Reception: Saturday 9 March 2019 ( noon-5 pm) Tashiro Kaplan Building


noun: a basic, essential, or enduring part (as of an individual, a class, or an entry) 2019

On view, Core Collection is an exploration of human dualism showcased through contemporary portrait paintings of diverse young women specifically from the Seattle area.

Over the course of 6 years, Opio has worked to capture the likeness of her models through her watery layers of predominantly black and white acrylic paint combined with stark accent colors to create visually striking imagery. With each portrait set against a surreal like overly- simplified background, the figure is grounded through the use of positive and negative spaces on the canvas. While typography and assorted  pattern designs adorn the women, the attention is highly placed on an individual narrative while weaving a common thread that shares an idea of dichotomy being present within all of us.

New Group Exhibit




Shoreline, WA –

As part of Black History Month, AFTERMASH explores a wide range of African American experience, from portraiture to conceptual installation art, from photography to painting to video and sculpture. The exhibition is on view till 8:30 pm on February 9th, with regular gallery hours Monday – Friday from 9:00am – 5:00 pm until April 21, 2017. ARTISTS: Yadesa Bojia, Vincent Keele, Christen Mattix, Fiona McCargo, Kemba Opio, Brandon Roach, Woron Ta Tele.

IMAGES, clockwise from upper left: Christen Mattix, The Charleston 9, 2016; Vincent Keele, Private Cathay William, 2015; Kemba Opio, Splendor, 2015; Brandon Roache, Backpack, 2017; Fiona McCargo, Blocked Chakras, 2016; Woron Ta Tele, Artistry I Obscura Me, (video still); 2015

Making Art 24hrs….

CoCA New Wave Ball & Auction

CoCA’s 24th Annual 24-hour Art Marathon & Auction

Celebrating our 35th Anniversary, we are proud to announce the CoCA New Wave Ball & Auction, our 24th Annual 24-hour Art Marathon and Auction.

About the Art Marathon & Auction:
CoCA’s 24th Annual 24-Hour Art Marathon & Auction is a three-day celebration of contemporary art. Held at the Summit Building in Seattle (420 E Pike St), the events starts at 10am Thursday, November 10 when over 20 artists embark on a 24-hour journey where they paint, draw, collage, spray and wax their way to over 100 new works of art. For this years marathon and auction we are throwing it back to CoCA’s first year, 1981. It was the New Wave era. Glam it up and pull on those wristbands, studded belts (and hot pink?)!


We’ve put together a stellar list of artists for this year’s event including: Juli Adams, Zeynep Banu Alev, Crystal Barbre, CASH, Casey Curran, Julie Devine, Jessica Dodge, Braden Duncan, Galvanic Games, Aaron Haba, Gabriel Marquez, Hanna Myers, Kemba Opio, Kyle Rees, Erika Rier, Sara Takako-Skinner, Mackenzie Stratton, Robin Walker, Casey Weldon, Leslie West, Daniel John Williams, and Junko Yamamoto. Plus Daniel Carrillo will be back creating tin-type portraits for you on site during the preview party on Thursday, November 10!

These artists are preparing to paint, cut, design, melt, fabricate, code, photograph, glue, snip, draw, wire, and sew over 100 phenomenal new works of art during the frenetic, controlled chaos that is the CoCA 24-Hour Art Marathon.

Schedule of Events:

On the evening of Thursday, November 10, we hold our popular Art Preview Party during Capitol Hill Art Walk where the public is invited to preview the completed works and hoist a glass of beer in celebration. On Saturday, November 12, these freshly minted works of art will be auctioned off by the indomitable and entertaining auctioneer, Laura Michalek. Guests will be treated to a sumptuous seated dinner.

The entire event launches at 10AM on Thursday, November 10 with 24 hours of controlled chaos as 20+ emerging and established artists paint, draw, wax, construct, collage, spray, write and sculpt their way to creating nearly 100 new works of art to be auctioned off at the New Wave Ball & Auction on Saturday, November 12. Everyone is welcome to come watch the artists in action during the Marathon.

Join the ongoing cacophony at the Art Party on Thursday, November 10, from 6-9pm during Capitol Hill Art Walk. Meet the artists and get a peek at works in progress. Admission by donation.

On Saturday, November 12 doors open at 5:30pm for CoCA’s popular silent and live auctions with the effervescent Laura Michalek, our auctioneer and guide for the evening. While you decide which of the pieces you’ll be bidding on, enjoy complimentary tasty beverages from Columbia Winery and Elysian Brewing with a cash bar featuring Sparkle Donkey Tequila. You’ll be seated for a sumptuous dinner courtesy of New Roots Organics and Underwood Stables then groove on out the door to the new wave beats of DJ Jesse Milden.

To further our mission to support contemporary art, CoCA offers 50% of all auction sales back to the participating artists so the higher you bid, the more you directly help artists thrive!

New Wave Ball and Auction: $140.00 ($145.89 w/service fee)

CoCA’s 24th Annual Fundraiser includes silent and live auctions of art, plus seated dinner and drinks.

Support CoCA with a Donation: $50.00 ($50.00 w/service fee) 

Help us reach our Raise the Paddle goal ahead of time and/or in lieu of attending the event.


November 10th and 12th, 2016

CoCA 24-hour Art Marathon Artist Preview Party

November 10, 2016, 6:00pm

CoCA New Wave Ball & Auction

November 12, 2016, 5:30pm

Where: Summit Building 420 E. Pike Street

Out sincerest thanks to our amazing sponsors!:

And as a generous show of their support of the CoCA Art Marathon, our sponsor, Blick Art Materials is offering 15% off of purchases of $25 or more, and 30% off custom framing, Oct 17-Nov 27! Access the coupons here: 

– See more at:

Making Public Artwork


Thank you, Office Of Art & Culture in Seattle for allowing me the opportunity to create some cool public artwork for the city. I had the honor of being selected with 6 addtional artist to create temporary public artwork  for the duration of September-January 2017 sited along the Greenway of Rainier Valley in Seattle, WA. Below, is the process of me making this public artwork titled: Flavors Of Us

The portraits feature two different African-American women, one being one of my older sisters and the other a local musician. The images serve to reflect the beauty and diversity within women, and in particular, women of color.


My proposed concept image of a female portrait fabricated out of aluminum cans mounted on mat board, 11 x 14 inches, 2016.


Needed a lot of aluminum cans for this project and was very grateful that DRY Sparkling was able to donate all of the cans!!!











New Work

New work- working on multiple paintings at the same time for “The Core Collection.”

Left image: Wild + Domestic, 30 x 30 inches, acrylic on wood panel.

Middle image. Independent + Indecisive, 30 x 30 inches, acrylic on wood panel.

Right image: Wild + Domestic close-up.

Exhibition: Our Daily Armor: Woman as Warrior in Contemporary Art and Adornment

The Study 1, Kemba Opio

Twilight Gallery & Boutique

Our Daily Army: Women as Warriors in Contemporary Art and Adornment at Twilight Gallery will explore being a female inherently requires women to also be warrior-like, though on their own terms.


November 13th – December 6th, 2014  [ Opening Reception Nov. 13th, 6 to 9pm ] 4306 SW Alaska Street Seattle, WA. (206) 933-2444
For more information on this show please follow the link:

Beautiful Women


Title: Practical + Quirky

Pencil on Tracing Paper

36″ x 36″

My perspective on life has much to do with how my mother and five older sisters raised me. So hands down, I’ve always been surrounded by some amazing women. But I have to admit by working on this collection of portraits, I’ve met so many talented, down-to-earth and beautiful women. It truly reflects on the many levels that women in our society and worldwide are very much under-appreciated. I hope any women reading this post whether young or old knows just how beautiful, wonderful and much-loved they are. The women a part of this series have granted me this rare opportunity to showcase a diverse landscape in particular young women here in the Seattle area.


Title: Introverted + Extroverted

Pencil on Tracing Paper

36″ × 36″ inches


All work copyrighted by Kemba Opio 2014.

P.S. I wanted to give a shout out to Naomi Wachira for making time in her busy schedule to be a part of The Core Collection. Here’s a plugin to this incredibly talented Singer/Songwriter based in Seattle but making a name for herself worldwide. Her song  “I Am Women” is such an inspiration to me…… go figure!!