Skate Lagos: Rolling With the City's Skateboarders

Meet the three designers behind skate brand Motherlan

Lagos skateboarder at the egde of the ramp (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Skateboarding in Lagos
Lagos is home to a burgeoning skate scene – one that comes with its own set of identifiers and challenges. Skateboarding in Lagos is flourishing, with a young but rapidly growing community of skaters. In a city without state-of-the-art skate parks or ideal street conditions, the skaters tap into the DIY spirit at the heart of skateboarding.

Meet Lagos skateboarding trailblazers and hear why the scene is so exciting.

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

Meet the three designers behind skate brand Motherlan
Motherlan is the Lagos-based skate crew and brand who are taking Nigerian skateboarding culture to the world. The team embrace Lagos living and infuse their graphics with Nigerian pop culture references. In 2018 Motherlan released their first film, 'Edward', shot between Lagos and London. They followed this up in 2020 with Victoria, a film that merges skateboarding with a cinema-style pseudo narrative.

Leo, co-founder of Nigerian skate brand, Motherlan (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

The Motherlan family are young, uncompromising and unapologetic. Their t-shirt graphics play with self-aware notions of African identity.

Here they give their insights to Lagos' street scene.

Lagos skater (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

How do you describe skateboarding in Lagos?
The skate scene in Lagos is unique. Really there's no spots or skateparks to skate, so you have to be really creative with what you do. People see spots in other countries and they just skate it – you can't do that in Lagos, there's a lot of improvising, so that's where the style comes from as well.

Lagos skater (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Are there any challenges that are unique to skateboarding in Nigeria?
There are a couple challenges – skating is misunderstood in Africa, like, if you skate you're seen as unserious or a delinquent because everyone expects you to aspire to be a doctor or banker or something. Skating is just a piece of wood on wheels to people, but we're gonna change that.

Lagos from above (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

What can you tell us about the creative energy in Lagos right now?
The creative community in Lagos is crazy, there’s some weird energy. It’s very easy to misunderstand but also really easy to fall in love with. It’s just the chaos that makes everything kind of work together, cause that's what every Lagosian can relate to. So regarding the creative scene a lot of us just put out what we feel: chaos. It’s chaos!

Jomi Marcus-Bello (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Meet the team behind skate shop WAFFLESNCREAM
Together with his team, Jomi Marcus-Bello established Lago's first skate shop, WAFFLESNCREAM. Since launching they've become champions of the scene and a home to skaters, supporting the movement both in Lagos and abroad. Homecoming and WAFFLESNCREAM worked together over Easter 2019 to bring skaters across Lagos together. This was part of a larger community effort by WAFFLESNCREAM who are currently fundraising to build Lagos' first skate park.

Lagos skate style (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

Skateboarder (2019)Original Source: Homecoming Festival

Lagos skater (2019) by @deeds_artOriginal Source: Homecoming Festival

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 the Lagos skate community for their involvement and support of the festival!

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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