Art in Lagos: 9 Game Changers & Alternative Voices

Meet the people defining Lagos creative scene.

Nike Davies-Okundaye (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

The Nigerian artistic landscape is evolving – meet the people, study the artworks, and step inside the spaces that are changing the game and unlocking new opportunities for Lagos' creative community.

Nike Davies-Okundaye (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Artist and gallerist Nike Davies-Okundaye
Nike Davies-Okundaye is a Nigerian batik and Adire textile artist. She is known for reviving and sustaining traditional craft practices in art, and is the founder and director of four art centres in Nigeria that offer free training to over 150 young artists in visual, musical and performing arts. Her gallery in Lagos, the Nike Centre for Art and Culture, is a standing testament to her efforts.

Homecoming Voices: Nike Davies-Okundaye (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

"The young people need to come home; this country is theirs to rule! The older people are already at the departure hall."
Nike Davies-Okundaye

Nengi Omuku next to her artwork (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Artist Nengi Omuku
From her studio in Lagos, (a converted lawyers office), Nengi Omuku creates work that focuses on the body and how it plays a part in identity and difference. Her paintings employ metaphors and themes on race, identity mental journeying and mutual belonging, usually manifesting as anthropomorphic forms positioned in surreal landscapes.

Artwork by Nengi Omuku (2019) by Nengi OmukuOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

“We’re not only focused on what is happening immediately around us, we are looking out to the world.”
Nengi Omuku

Victor Ehikamenor (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Artist Victor Ehikhamenor
Born in Edo State, Nigeria, Victor Ehikhamenor is a multi-faceted artist who lives and works between Lagos and Maryland, USA. Recognised as one of Nigeria's preeminent contemporary artists, Victor's practice encompasses painting, drawing, photography, sculpture and installation, as well as unique perforated works on paper.

Homecoming Voices: Victor Ehikamenor (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Victor Ehikamenor (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Victor Ehikamenor draws inspiration from the dual aesthetic and spiritual traditions which infused his upbringing, using imagery and symbolism from both Edo traditional religion and Catholicism.

Untitled (2019) by Victor EhikamenorOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

"The contemporary art scene in Nigeria is buoyant, it's flourishing. I feel a sense of community."
Victor Ehikamenor

Adenrele Sonariwo (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Curator and gallerist Adenrele Sonariwo
Adenrele Sonariwo is a Nigerian art curator, and the founder of Rele Art Gallery, Lagos. Adenrele was the lead curator of the first Nigerian pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale in 2017.

Homecoming Voices: Adenrele Sonariwo (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Rele Gallery is one of several young contemporary art spaces in Lagos which are shedding a modern light on the today's African art landscape, allowing it to play on a global scale.

Untitled (2019) by Ayobola Kekere-EkunOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Artist Ayobola Kekere-Ekun
The artist behind this work is Ayobola Kekere-Ekun. The exhibition, Resilient Lines, was hosted at Rele Gallery in 2019.

Untitled (2019) by Ayobola Kekere-EkunOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

The title Resilient Lines is intended to encapsulate the spirit and complexity of femininity and womanhood across lineages, as well as reference the usage of linear and multilinear lines prominent in Kekere-Ekun’s artistic output.

Untitled (2019) by Ayobola Kekere-EkunOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Kekere-Ekun creates predominantly with a ‘quilling’ technique, in which paper materials are stripped and manipulated to create textured, two-dimensional forms.

Untitled (2019) by Ayobola Kekere-EkunOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Quilling has roots stemming as far back as the 15th century, when it served mostly decorative purposes. The medium has since progressed, finding mainstream relevance and success in the works of contemporary artists.

Daniel Obasi (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Art Director and designer Daniel Obasi
Daniel Obasi is a Nigerian art director and designer. He is the co-founder of 16/16, a dual concept art gallery and boutique residence on Victoria Island, Lagos. He feels that many young Nigerian creatives are defined by their DIY spirit and self-starter mentality.

Homecoming Voices: Daniel Obasi (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Homecoming Voices: Yagazie Emezi (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Photographer Yagazie Emezi
Yagazie Emezi is an artist and self-taught documentary photographer from Aba, Nigeria. Based in Lagos, she focuses on stories surrounding African women and their health, sexuality, education and human rights. For Yagazie, Lagos provides constant inspiration for storytelling.

Oyinkan Dada (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Curator Oyinkan Dada
Oyinkan Dada is an independent curator. Amongst other exhibitions she co-curated ROOTS Volume 1: “Rock, War & Funk”, an exhibition at Lagos' Whitespace gallery, which examined West Africa’s rich musical history, and specifically Nigeria's pre and post-wartime music between 1960 – 1979.

ROOTS Volume 1: “Rock, War & Funk” (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

ROOTS Volume 1: “Rock, War & Funk” explores how a climate of political upheaval and war impacted the nation's musical heritage during that time, and it's lasting impact on generations.

The years 1960 – 1979 are important in the past and present of Nigeria’s socio-political history, as they formed the first-decade before, during and after Nigeria's first oil boom.

ROOTS Volume 1: “Rock, War & Funk” (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

The exhibition displayed early markers of today’s metropolitan lifestyle, including the re-imagination of a '60s suburban teenager’s bedroom, as well as other pop-culture emblems from the era.

Teezee (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Musician and publisher Teni 'Teezee' Zaccheaus
Teezee is a co-founder of The NATIVE, the Lagos-based publishing platform which presented ROOTS Volume 1: “Rock, War & Funk”.

Homecoming Voices: Teezee (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

“All eyes are on Lagos’ contemporary cultural scene. Its creative energy is fuelled by the fact that it has. Such differences in society. It’s the largest black city in the world - a cultural melting pot of everything. It’s also the craziest city in the world, everyday life in Lagos is an experience.”
Teezee, DRB

Credits: Story

Founded in 2017, Homecoming is an annual festival of cultural exchange between Africa and the world. Held in Lagos, Nigeria, Homecoming puts a spotlight on African talent – from its up and comers to its biggest stars in Music, Fashion, Art, and Culture. Beyond the annual festival moment, Homecoming focuses its efforts on uniting a global community of musicians, artists, designers and creatives, through collaborations and partnerships between these trailblazers and international brands, institutions and thought leaders.

Find out more via our website, Instagram and YouTube Channel.

Homecoming thanks all artists, curators and musicians involved in making this exhibit happen!

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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