Saturday 24 August 2013

In Abuja, Ezenwa Maja-Pearce leads women to Prayer For Nigeria

Whatever art has to offer Nigeria in the spiritual realm, six artists from Lagos and the FCT, Abuja will explain when they open  group art exhibition titled Prayer for Nigeria, from Tuesday, August 27 at The Thought Pyramid Art Gallery, in Abuja.

The artists, Angela Amami-Isiuwe, Victoria Udondian, Ngozi Akande, Klaranze Okhide, Stella Awoh and Juliet Ezenwa Maja-Pearce hope that with their art, the contributions of women at this period of the country’s challenges would have been acknowledged.

A painting by Juliet Ezenwa Maja-Pearce from the exhibition Prayer for Nigeria

The coordinator of the group, Ezenwa Maja-Pearce, believes that the ongoing challenges, facing Nigeria, can be solved by prayers of women and children from across the country. The gathering, according to the organisers was inspired by one of Ezenwa Maja-Pearce‘s works, a collection of acrylic collage paintings on canvas, portraying  groups of women and children deep in fervent prayer.

Ezenwa Maja-Pearce is constantly experimenting with materials and methods. "I have delved into different media in search of how best to express my art. My primary purpose is to produce art that will remain relevant and endure", she says.

A native of one of Nigeria's troubled spots, the oil-producing Delta State, she has been in the forefront of the campaign for upholding the rights of women and the girl-child in Nigeria. Her works on those themes were exhibited at the Female Genital Mutilation Exhibition in Canada, Germany, the UK and the US. She currently runs an NGO, Future-Perfect, which organises creative workshops and trainings for empowering women and young people. 
Ezenwa's Yemaja Art Gallery in Surulere, Lagos, takes on students on industrial attachment and apprenticeship. She is very widely exhibited. Her recent works are a collector’s must-have. She has many solo exhibitions to her credit. She is usually found at the annual Harmattan Workshop organised by the Bruce Onobrakpeya Foundation, which takes place at Agbahra-Otor, Delta state. Migrations, her most recent solo exhibition of plates, prints and installations, took place (on August 2012)  at the Nike Art Gallery in Lekki, Lagos, Nigeria. 
Thought Pyramid discloses that the plan to exhibit the works of the female artists in Abuja, has been in the pipeline for a long time. “Like most labour-intensive professions, female artists are very few. The challenges they confront in order to keep practicing their art is enormous. They have worked hard to produce and finish the works for this show. Each of them has been in the field for a good number of years and they have all shown the potential for longevity. I am very pleased to invite the Abuja public to come and view this exhibition.” 

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