Sunday, 9 August 2020

Evolution of 'gele' as female fashion, from Nigeria to African diaspora stage

Gele head-wear in Black Is King. Pic: www.beyonce.com

A Yoruba adage of old that says ‘a woman’s fashion is incomplete without her gele’, has proven its resilience, even in the 21st century contemporary African culture.

With its creasing popularity, recently, on the international fashion space of ethnic minority, it is important to track the modern evolution of gele (pronounced 'gaylay'). The origin of gele as emanated from Yoruba culture and virtue is not exactly known. However, many archival photographs of over a century old suggested that gele must have been around much longer than the time those pictures were taken.

Tuesday, 4 August 2020

Ojih Odutola creates women's 'kingdom' in UK debut solo

'Establishing the Plot', a drawing from A Countervailing Theory (2019), © Toyin Ojih Odutola. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

In her short period of gradual climb on the commercial art ladder, Nigerian-American artist Toyin Ojih Odutola's interest is not just about counting the digits. She is also pushing her work into the critical appreciation space for broad followership.

Barbican Centre's Gallery, London will be showing Odutola in what has been described as her first-ever UK exhibition, titled

A Countervailing Theory, showing from August, Tuesday 11-Sunday, 23 2020. The announcement was coming barely one month after Portrait Gallery, London disclosed Ojih Odutola's commission of author Zadie Smith's portrait.

Saturday, 1 August 2020

Nigeria's dominance of Caine Prize winners... diaspora, other factors

Irenosen Okojie, winner of 2020 Caine Prize for African Writing.

First awarded in 2000 to Sudanese, Leila Aboulela for her short story 'The Museum,' The Caine Prize for African Writing, has, however recorded more Nigerian recipients than any country on the continent.

With the announcement, on Monday July 27, of Irenosen Okojie's 'Grace Jones' as winner of the AKO Caine Prize 2020, Nigeria now has seven winners of the award. Helon Habila, 'Love Poems' (2001); Segun A. Afolabi, 'Monday Morning' (2005); Chukwuenweniwe Osondu, 'Waiting' (2009); Babatunde Rotimi, 'Bombay Republic' (2012); Tope Folarin, 'Miracle' (2013); and Lesley Nneka Ammah 'Skinned' (2019), are earlier Nigerian recepients of the prize.

Thursday, 30 July 2020

Nsikak Essien (1957-2020), master of experimental art

Nsikak Essien (1957-2020)

Another prominent artist, Nsikak Essien, passed on, Wednesday night in Lagos. Essien, died of yet to be identified cause.

Monday, 27 July 2020

Returning from postponements, art fairs take cautious steps

ART X Lagos 2019.

Through the prism of the secondary market, art may have been on its way back from the COVID-19 economic shock, but the horizon is still hazy for large-scale events.

Friday, 24 July 2020

Emmanuella, 'Iya jogbo' on Max fm's 'Wetin Dey' dies

Emmanuella Pobeni Adepoju

Broadcast personality, Emmanuella Pobeni Adepoju (popularly known as Iya Jogbo), died today.

Sunday, 19 July 2020

Olaku, Ogiugo others in 'DeFiAnCe' against pandemic

A piece by Edosa Ogiugo titled 'Black Princess' (Uvbi Ne Khui), pastel on paper, 16.5x23.4 inches, dated 2020.
In its debut art exhibition, a new entrant, Breath Of Hope Africa Gallery has assembled 20 artists, from across two generations.

Saturday, 18 July 2020

FG announces N2.3 trillion stimulus for creative, hotel other industries

Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo
As the federal government, on Thursday, announced a stimulus for the MSMEs of the economic sectors, the creative industry seemed to have been included, perhaps, based on the report of the committee set up by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.

In a statement by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, through his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, the creative sector, private schools, hotels, and road transport workers among others, will benefit from the stimulus package of the federal  government.. The stimulus, specifically, he explained, is for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic economic crisis. Osinbajo who spoke at the 2020 edition of the MSMEs Awards, said the support scheme had been covered by the government’s Economic Sustainability Plan.

Sunday, 12 July 2020

Today, FG hands over National Arts Theatre to CBN, Bankers' Committee

National Theatre, Lagos.
A major shift in the culture sector took place few hours ago as the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed led the federal government delegation in the handing over of the National Arts Theatre complex, Iganmu, Lagos to the CBN and the Bankers’ Committee.


In attendance, according to sources from the government were the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele; Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Sunday Dare; the CEO, Access Bank Plc, Herbert Wigwe; Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, his deputy and other top officials in the state government.

Actor, Jimmy Johnson of 'The Village Headmaster' (1940-2020)

 Jimmy Johnson. Pic: c/o Voice of Nigeria..
Actor and broadcaster, Jimmy Johnson who died on Wednesday, July 8, 2020 would be remembered for two historic parts in Nigeria’s cultural space.


 Johnson was a member of the revered Mbari Artistes and Writers Club, formed at the University of Ibadan in the early 1960s. The group, in the post independence Nigeria served as fountain from which the new generation of creative professionals benefited. Members of the Mbari Club, among others include Wole Soyinka, Ulli Beier (German linguist), Chinua Achebe, Uche Okeke, Christopher Okigbo, Mabel Segun, J.P Clark, Christopher Kolade, Lindsay Barrett, Demas Nwoko, Tunji Oyelana, Jimi Solanke and Bruce Onobrakpeya.


Tuesday, 7 July 2020

For UK's national gallery, Odutola captures White Teeth author, Smith

Portrait of author, Zadie Smith tagged 'A Love Letter To Black Britain' by Toyin Ojih Odutola.

Nigerian-born artist, Toyin  Ojih-Odutola's strokes in portraiture go to the National Portrait Gallery, London, U.K. And the sitter, a big novelist: Zadie Smith, author of the popular novel White Teeth.


Sunday, 5 July 2020

Okon, Arthur others get Britain's Turner Prize £10,000 bursaries

Ima-Abasi Okon. Pic: Photo: Georgia Lucas-Going.

Europe-based Nigerian artist, Ima-Abasi Okon, has been listed among 2020 Turner Prize recipients of £10,000 bursaries. Also on the list is Liz Johnson Artur, a Ghanaian-Russian artist.

Saturday, 4 July 2020

Report on creative industry will get 'full implementation', FG assures

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed
One month and two weeks after the Federal Government inaugurated the Post-Covid-19 Initiatives Committee on the Creative Industry, Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has assured that Federal Government will fully implement the contents.