Saturday 6 April 2024

'Next of Kin Series 6' opens with 'Renewed Hope', continental expansion

From left, Obehi Ojeaga, General Manager NMT; Chief Olorogun Jeff Ajueshi, Founder Thought Pyramid; Ovie Omatsola, exhibition director at Thought Pyramid; and Ikemefula Chikwendu, Assistant General Manager NMT during the Press Lagos. 
THE Thought Pyramid Art Centre has announced the grand opening of the sixth edition of its Next of Kin Art Competition and Exhibition. Themed Renewed Hope, with a rider The Continental Season," the 6th edition marks a departure from tradition by extending its scope beyond Nigeria.

For the first time, four non-Nigerian visual artists have been selected from across Africa to join 20 finalists, emphasizing Next of Kin's commitment to redefining boundaries, encouraging creative dialogue, and honoring artistic brilliance internationally. The main prize winner for Next of Kin Series 6 will be unveiled during the grand opening on April 7, 2024, Thought Pyramid Art Centre, 96, Norman Williams Street, Ikoyi Lagos, at 5:00 pm West African Time.

Director at Thought Pyramid, Ovie Omatsola disclosed that Next of Kin Series 6 exhibition will continue to welcome visitors from April 8th to April 30th, 2024. Admission is free, and viewing hours are as follows: Monday to Friday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, Saturday: 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm, and Location: Thought Pyramid Art Centre- 96, Norman Williams Street, South West, Ikoyi, Lagos State, Nigeria. Martin Senkugbuge (Uganda), Yakno Ene, Adenuga John Opeyemi, Emeka Amadi, Victoria Ndubuisi, Elie Hatungimana (Rwanda), Opara Courage, Oladeji Emmanuel Adeniji, Joseph Miegbolabofagha Daya, Adenle Olukunle Sunday, Cliff Kibuuka (Uganda) and Omoyeni Ogedengbe are among the finalists. Others include Mek-Abasi Effiong, Chinedu Raphael Chidebe, Abdlquadr Olamide Ojelade, Abdulrazaq A. Titilayo,, Awoleye David Olusegun, Betzalel Alvin,  Jayeola Damilola Joshua and Evans Akanyijuka (Uganda).

 Omatsola noted that welcoming applications from outside Nigeria has given  continental expansion and enriched the Next of Kin exhibition with diverse perspectives and creative expressions "Instead of the usual 10 finalists, Series 6 will be exhibiting works from selected 20 outstanding artists from the entries who will exhibit at the grand finale on the 7th of April, 2024," Omatsola stated. "This change allows us to showcase more talent, providing a larger platform for artists to exhibit their work and gain recognition." He disclosed that the finalists have interpreted this theme creatively, across various artistic media (excluding Performance Art). 

Next of Kin is a project under the auspices of the Thought Pyramid Art Centre. The art exhibition component of this competition takes place annually in March at the Thought Pyramid Art Centre in Lagos. Ovie Omatsola serves as the coordinator, curator, and exhibition director for both Next of Kin and Thought Pyramid Art Centre, Lagos.

Next of kin is a yearly Juried art project that is both a competition and an exhibition. This is the sixth in the series of the art project where the new generation of artists are guided, supported, and mentored at the initial stages of their career where it matters the most. Next of Kin contributes to the development of fresh talents. 

Anthonia Nnneji, Christian Allison, Ikechukwu Ezeigwe, Olalekan Adeyemi, and Idowu Emmanuel are three of the five previous winners of Next of Kin and since achieving that feat, they have gone ahead to dominate their respective art specializations both locally and internationally.  

Next of Kin is an art initiative that has been created to plan and prepare the future of art in Nigeria by discovering from the hoard of current emerging artists- one who possesses that peculiar artistic originality and creative disruptiveness with transcending futuristic abilities and traits. The success of Next of Kin lies in the unearthing of such talents. 

Thought Pyramid Art Centre is an art organization established with a distinctive mentality to be a pioneering art stakeholder in the domestic and international art scene. Beyond art sales and the promotion of domestic art to global art enthusiasts, Thought Pyramid Art Centre aims to be functional in the community or environment in which it exists. Hence, Thought Pyramid Art Centre is largely involved in the encouragement of Nigerian artists and creating a standard accessible art platform for the future generations of artists who will be entrusted with the responsibility of pushing Nigerian arts across the shores and borders of the world.  This and more is what we envisioned when we thought up Next of Kin.

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