Wednesday 11 July 2018

Shonibare's studio, gallery project takes off in Lagos

Design by Elsie Owusu for Yinka Shonibare's Lekki, Lagos house with gallery and studio.
Nigerian-British artist, Yinka Shonibare's much-awaited art facility project in Lagos takes off in September this year.
Announced by Shonibare MBE during his 'Wind Sculpture VI' exhibition at Ndubuisi Kanu Garden, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos two years ago, the house, which is expected to include his studio and personal gallery is being designed by Elsie Owusu Architects (eoa). According to information on eoa's website, the house project will be built in Lekki, a Lagos suburb of choice properties.

Owusu OBE, Ghana-born British architect stated: "The design pays close attention to environmental control in the tropical climate", the architect said on her website. "With space for friends, family and visiting artists, this eco-building will function as Shonibare's home, studio and personal gallery, and includes a vibrant courtyard room for performances, parties and social gatherings."

The contents of the house, according to Owusu include  "barrier-free design' that applies extensive application of "limited space, combining the wrap-around wheelchair ramp with Shonibare's library". The Lagos project "is in association with Symbiotica and NS Design Consultants, a multi-faceted living, working and public space for internationally recognised UK/Nigerian artist Shonibare".

During the opening of 'Wind Sculpture VI', in Lagos, Shonibare recalled his earlier visit to the  city in 2011, and insisted it has played a great part in an intent to contribute to the growing energetic art space of the city. Specifically, Shonibare assured that a "Contemporary art museum," will be the contribution to the city of his childhood. Though source of funding for the project was not disclosed, the artist however noted:  "There are powerful people in Nigeria who can build such museum".

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