From Minday, January 23 to March 4, 2017, Tayo Olayode, will open the Wheatbaker’s 2017 Art Program with Permutations, an exhibition showcasing 38 mixed media artworks.
|Tayo Olayode in front of one of his works during a preview.|
The body of work has been years in the making, as Olayode, an award winning artist who has taken part in group exhibitions in Ghana, Kenya, USA, Britain, Dubai, and Canada finally presents his first solo-exhibition in Nigeria.
Olayode, who graduated from Ahmadu Bello University with a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art in 2000, presentsdiverse works using a range of complex techniques and styles, setting him apart as an artist who spans the worlds of abstract, realist and surrealist expression. One of the most exciting elements in the show is an 8 by 10 foot long installation created out of colorful synthetic ropes and copper wire which he calls Endless Development; a powerful reminder that society is strongest when we allow diverse philosophies, ethnicities and persuasions to be interwoven into a rich tapestry of creative expression – especially poignant in an increasingly fractured and polarized world.
Olayode presents his latest experimental works with stirring portraits of global influencers like Mahatma Gandhi, Bob Marley, Che Guevara and even recently retired Barack Obama in his new Leadership Series. He created these works using an ancient Tibetan technique of burning and perforating rice paper with incense sticks, which he learned from a Buddhist monk while attending an international artist residency in 2014. Olayode has combined this Far Eastern artform with the African tradition of using glass beads to create highlights, presenting an intriguing body of textured works on paper and canvas. Olayode’s Flow Series using asphalt and acrylic drippings to create colorful abstract works is a perfect counterpoint to his intricate perforated art.
Olayode’s breadth of expression can be attributed to early mentorship by working with leading artists such as the late Fred Archibong, Professor Abayomi Barber at the University of Lagos, and later with Abiodun Olaku, at the Universal Studios of Art Collective. Olayode also benefited from a three month residency with celebrated African artist, Professor Ablade Glover in Ghana, who inspired his world-view. He is a pioneer member of the Iponri Art Studios, the President of the Watercolor League, and a member of the Nigerian Society of Artists and the Guild of Professional Fine Artists.
Olayode’s outstanding artistic practice has won him multiple awards including the Fred Archibong Scholarship in 1995, the Association of Fine Arts Students (AFAS) Leadership Award in 1999, the Terra Kultur Ford Foundation Art Award for Best Young Artist in Nigeria in 2006, and the Arthouse Foundation Scholarship & Vermont Studio Cultural Exchange Competition in 2014.
“Permutations showcases Tayo Olayode’s unusual and refreshing multi-dimensional art in 360 degrees” said Sandra Mbanefo Obiago, the exhibition’s curator and director of SMO Contemporary Art. “We very rarely come across an artist who has mastered so many different styles, without loosing his own unique creative voice.”
The exhibition is dedicated to the memory of late Chief Sammy Olagbaju, one of Nigeria’s most influential collectors and art patrons, who encouraged and mentored Olayode since his student days.The exhibition is sponsored by the Wheatbaker and Veuve Clicquot.