Saturday 17 October 2020

Rare pieces of masters, contemporary artists for 6th Sogal art auction

'They Come From Makoko', (oil on canvas, 69 x 98 cm, 1991) by Kolade Oshinowo. Pic: c/o Signature Gallery. Pic: c/o Signature Beyond.

AFTER five successful editions of adding commercial and critical values to the secondary art market, Sogal auction makes its 6th edition with quite a number of rare pieces.

For the 2020 edition, top modernists and contemporary artists will converge, featuring among others, paintings, drawings and sculptures by Ben Enwonwu, Abayomi  Barber, Kolade Oshinowo, Clary Nelson Cole, Muraina Oyelami and Rufus Ogundele.

Opening its preview from Monday, October 19-24, with sales holding on Sunday 25, 2020, at Signature Beyond Gallery, Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, the yearly auction also features works of contemporary Nigerian and other West African artists like John Ogbeta, Djokou Kassi Nathalie (Cameroon), Tolulope Okunlola, Charly Almeida (Benin Republic). The auction is putting on sales a total lot of 85 works from over 70 artists.

Observing all the Lagos State guidelines on Covid-19, the gallery assured that safety is its priority, particularly in the post-lockdown from the pandemic. "The 6th Sogal art auction will be held live at Signature Gallery, 107 Awolowo Rd, Ikoyi from 6:30pm to 8pm on Sunday, October 25 with Covid 19 guidelines to be well observed," the auction house stated. "Also, the online and telephone bidding will be encouraged as the sales, like the previous editions, is expected to attract top collectors within Lagos, Nigeria and international bidders."

Among the lots from the masters is a 1991 sculpture by Ben Osawe, Untiled, in highly stylised facial and elongated neck, depicting a lady in ornament of grace and elegance. Also, is a rare bronze titled Modern Warrior, dated 1962, by Abayomi Barber. Captured in action, the warrior is clearly of a native, perhaps ancient depiction as the costumes indicate.

Works from the contemporary artists mostly reflect thoughts of African youths in political and social themes. Such works include February Weather by Kolawole Olalekan, in a satirical commuter bus known as danfo, dated 2020; Bob Nosa-Uwagboe's Activist Detained Illegally, dated 2020, highlights the challenges in Africa's sociology-political terrain; wood sculpture titled Owl, by Abdulahi Aliru, in a minimalistic style of oval shape; and Chukwuemeka Michael Osisiego's They Dominate We Stand and Look, a 2020 mixed media that captures the current Nigerian situation of imbalance sharing of commonwealth, among other lots.

From all indications, the expectations at the 6th Sogal auction is high, so explained the growing number of new collectors during the past editions. Some of the collectors, it's been disclosed have been inspired by the quality of timeless art that Sogal art auction showcases every year.

For 27 years, Signature Beyond Gallery has been going strong, relying on its vast experience in art appreciation to keep the Sogal auction going stronger.  Signature recalled that with an emphasis on quality, Sogal art auction entered the Lagos market scene on October 20, 2014. “Since then, we have continued to contribute to the growth of the domestic secondary art market, and consequently an increased appreciation of Nigerian and indeed African art internationally.”

The Sogal auction, Signature said, is also about preserving the works of masters as well as encouraging contemporary artists to promote artistic excellence.

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