Thursday 22 August 2013

At a Lagos forum, Prof Jari talks art pricing, reputation and 'Implication on Art Practice'

Guest Speaker, Prof Jacob Jari from Ahmadu Bello University {ABU}, Zaria, Kaduna Syate {left},  host, Prince Yemisi Shyllon and visiting PhD scholar, Jessica Williams , a Research Fellow from University of Maryland, U.S., during the Omooba Yemisi Adedoyin Shyllon Foundation {OYASAF} Lecture Series tagged The Price of Art and its Implication on Art Practice in Nigeria, held at OYASAF, Maryland, Lagos, Nigeria…yesterday.
Parts of the text from Prof Jacb Jari's paper:
  "The point I have been trying to make since the beginning of this lecture is that the manner in which works are collected in Nigeria encourages artists to remain in a certain mould of creation which targets sales. There appears to be no logic in why a certain artist’s work attracts a huge price against another artist’s work which sells for almost nothing. There is therefore, the tendency for artists who wish to sell works to ape those who successfully sell theirs. This perhaps accounts for why forgery is particularly rampant in Nigeria not only perpetrated by artists but by gallery owners. There is no place this situation is better illustrated than in the workshops which expatriates set up in Nigeria in the 1940s and 1960s. 
"Take the case of the Oye Ekiti workshop set up by Fr. Kevin Carroll in 1947. It was meant to employ already established carvers in Yoruba land to create Christian art for Catholic churches based on indigenous imagery. For about seven years the carvers in Oye Ekiti produced brilliant works for the churches until the strong lure for money pushed Fr. Carroll into accepting commissions to reproduce Epa masks which were both highly sought after by traditional shrine keepers as well as collectors abroad. Consequently, the workshop centre was closed down in 1953".
Details coming.

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