Announcing the joint 3rd and 4th Editions of the Lagos Biennial.
2021 - 2023
Online 4 - 16 Dec 2021
The joint Third and Fourth Editions - launches on 4 December 2021 with the presentation online of videos from the 13 teams selected from the 2021 open call process. This process-based format was developed during the period of the Covid 19 pandemic to work around reduced travel possibilities and to create a new format with a cohort of artists working across a longer duration.
The Biennial received applications of the highest quality with artists from across Africa, Asia, Oceania, the Americas and Europe, leaving the Jury with a tough job in identifying the proposals which best responded to the established theme of < Refuge >. The 13 selected teams, each comprising a curator, artists, and designers, were recognised by the jury as responding in conceptually complex and currently pertinent ways to ideas of < Refuge >. They each were able to combine critical practice with aesthetic strategies and approaches to the theme. Their proposals, which the public will see presented from 4 December, will further be developed over the next year and then realised in Lagos in 2023.
The 13 teams were selected by our expert Jury members, N’Gone Fall, Kathryn Weir, and Kunle Adeyemi, from a total of 67 applications from collaborative groups responding to the theme of < Refuge >. The three jury members will continue with Lagos Biennial 2021-2023. The Artistic directors for LB21/23 are Folakunlé Oshun and Kathryn Weir, with N’Goné Fall as scientific advisor. Kunlé Adeyemi will take on the role of design advisor for the Third and Fourth Editions. In 2022, additional artists invited by the Artistic Directors for special projects within Lagos Biennial 2021-2023 will be announced.
< Refuge.2021 > will take place online from 4 - 16 of December 2021. Each day < Refuge > teams will present online their independently conceived and produced research in relation to their proposal and the processes they foresee during the course of the two-year period of development leading up to the physical exhibition in Lagos in 2023.
Lagos Biennial Director Folakunle Oshun meets the President of France Emmanuel Macron at the Africa Season 2020 closing dinner
Lagos Biennial team exchange visit with Warsaw Biennale.
Premised on the theme for the 3rd/4th Edition of the Lagos Biennial "Refuge", we sought to encounter national monuments which purport to represent a collective identity.
Interviews with several characters from different ideological divides revealed contrasting views and positions. Premised on the history of Warsaw and indeed all of Poland, it is expected that these different political and ideological leanings would create clusters of "Refuge".
From political parties to women's rights movements, artist collectives, and even politically astute squats, the seemingly calm city is charged with a high tempo underground political heartbeat. What remains critical is the intelligence to accept contrasting views, while establishing lines of communication that allow us to live together. Many thanks to @wccforum for their support.
Lagos Biennial hosts international inaugural curatorial intensive programme as part of the 2nd Edition of the Biennial
The Lagos Biennial is proud to announce its Curatorial Intensive program in collaboration with Pro Helvetia Johannesburg. Emerging curators working on and off the continent are invited to apply to participate in a one-week intensive program that will take place in Lagos Nigeria from the 28th of October to the 4th of November. The Intensive overlaps with the Lagos Biennial and other art events within the Lagos art season.
The week-long program will be open to emerging curators who are practicing and require expert advice for an ongoing or future project. The intensive program seeks to facilitate new approaches in accessing knowledge and approaching topics and situations pertinent to African narratives in particular and the art of curating in general. A one-week seminar and workshop-based program, the Intensive is designed to give participants access to seasoned professionals in the practice.
Selected participants will have daily interaction with the Faculty — a pool of seasoned curators who will engage the participants in various sessions targeted at passing on practical knowledge and insights from their practice. The program seeks to facilitate new approaches in accessing knowledge and approaching topics, situations, and terminologies critical to African narratives and perspectives. Participants will undertake rigorous sessions designed to give precedence to their own world view, while re-assessing popular terminologies and trends which are used to situate Africa in the global art discussion.
Yinka Shonibare CBE hosts Lagos Biennial 2019 Run-Up exhibition at Guest Projects in London.
Exhibiting Artists: Emeka Ogboh, Jere Ikongio, and Logo Oluwamuyiwa
On the 27th of February 2018, the Lagos Biennial team was hosted the Guest Projects - an initiative of Yinka Shonibare studio in London. Three vibrant Nigerian artists were exhibited while the biennial curators shared conceptual ideas and plans for the 2nd edition of the Lagos Biennial "How To Build A Lagoon With Just a Bottle of Wine"
Emeka Ogboh is a graduate of the Fine and Applied Arts Department, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, who works primarily with sound and video to explore ways of understanding cities as cosmopolitan spaces with their unique characters. His work contemplates broad notions of listening and hearing as its main focus. His sound recordings also consider the history and aural infrastructure of cities, Lagos, Nigeria in particular. These Lagos recordings have produced a corpus of work entitled “Lagos Soundscapes,” which he has installed in different contexts. The installations often require a phenomenological immersion and an engagement with imagination and the imaginary such that the viewer encounters Lagos without being physically present in it. Ogboh has begun to explore audio archives, a recent interest in history, and how nostalgia and memory intersect in the conceptualization of the present.
Ogboh has exhibited both in Nigeria and in several international venues. They include the 56th Venice Biennale, the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos; Dak’Art Biennale, Menil Collection, Houston; Whitworth and Manchester city galleries; MassMoca Massachusetts; Museum of Contemporary Arts Kiasma, Helsinki, and Rauternstrauch-Joset-Museum, Cologne. Ogboh is a DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst) 2014 grant recipient, and the co-founder of the Video Art Network Lagos. He won the competition to produce a commissioned artwork for the Peace and Security Building of the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 2015
Title: Oshodi Stock Exchange
6 channel audio (presented here as stereo audio)
Oshodi Stock Exchange: is a soundtrack developed in collaboration with the Berlin-based composer Kristian Kowatsch, which combines recordings of Lagos Soundscapes layered with piano scores. The result is a sound piece that reveals the intensity and diversity of a megacity in all its virtually orchestral elements.
Slick City Empire
360 VR Balogun Market Shopping experience
Scan code or alternatively view directly on Youtube: https://youtu.be/pqUj2DBbQCc
VR 360 Balogun Market can be viewed in 360 degrees directly via the Youtube App or alternatively with VR-enabled applications and headgear.
Jeremiah Ikongio is a multidisciplinary artist creating new media, performance, and interactive art projects. Based in Lagos, he deals with topics such as the urban metropolis, identity, and archiving. His work has been shown locally and internationally, collaborating in exhibitions, such as A Visibility Matrix at the Douglas Hyde Gallery (2018) in Dublin, Waiting for a Revolution at the 5th Odessa Biennale of Contemporary Art, International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA) 2018 in Durban, ‘Atimgwēyē’ - Sound Installation in the Goethe-Institut, Lagos (2017), and the 11th Bienal do MERCOSUL, in Porto Alegre. He is also a Magnum Foundation Fellow and a Digital Earth Fellow.
Lagos was the second city in the world to be supplied with electricity in 1890. The first plant was installed in the PWD yard in Broad Street and although the first electric utility company, known as the Nigerian Electricity Supply Company, was established in 1929 Today Nigeria ranks second on the list of countries with the highest electricity access deficit in 2017 according to a World Bank report.
Over 40% of the Nigerian population (Africa’s most populous country) is without access to electricity, those who have it experience sporadic and frequent power outages. Lagos, the financial and cultural hub of West Africa and the 6th most populous city in the world experience these outages with profound effect on the region’s economy, health, and security.
Through a series of portraiture, city/landscape and still life the artist explores the socioeconomic and environmental effect of an unstable electric infrastructure. Using an interactive web database augmented reality, and spatial installation, the ongoing project invites the audience to experience what it means to live without Electrical power.
The project examines and explores why Electricity Access is Nigeria’s biggest infrastructural, economic and industrial challenge, how Energy Poverty has led to health, security, economic and environmental drawbacks in the country while advocating for the creation of more off-grid renewable power systems solutions.
AR-enabled photo – To view content on the image please download and install Zappar App. Open app and direct in-app camera at barcode activate then proceed to view the image via the device.
Logo “Logor” Oluwamuyiwa is a photographer. His approach revolves around conceptual and documentary-style photography. Logo’s interest in visual arts is to be a shrewd observer of the human carnival by capturing and retelling stories from perspectives that are often overlooked, ignored, and taken for granted.
He is an advocate for positive and rich storytelling via digital media as a tool for reorientation and pathways to new dialogue and knowledge acquisition.
He lives and works in Lagos, Nigeria, and is also a member of the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Nigeria.
A visual appreciation and expose of a city’s aesthetics and idiosyncrasies.
Even on the days when its ironic generosity offers less, Lagos is to me, what New York is to Photographers like Gary Winogrand, Diane Arbus Robert Frank, Joel Meyerowitz and the cities Stieglitz romanticized even.
Like many before me, I have assumed the role of an observer of this great human carnival, the most populated African city famous for her manic ability to go from an embarrassing zero to an impressive hundred in all its aesthetics, including her prized jewel: “Her Human Resources – The Lagosian”.
By visually asking “If I strip Lagos of the color, what will I find?”, Monochrome Lagos presents an alternative visual vocabulary through which to comprehend this city — one that strips Lagos down to its component parts, as an encounter between the individual and the built environment. In a palette limited to black and white I play with contrast, line, and architectural forms to frame the poetic juxtapositions of Lagosian relating to their city. The project muffles the sensorial tropes of Lagos, bringing to the fore the spaces wherein one can find solace within the city. The captions are often poetic ruminations on presence and absence. I am seeking to explore a dialogue between word and image that could re-envision the working structures of the photo-essay.
Monochrome Lagos is often showcased via virtual digital social media platforms. This serves as a living archive of the city and allows engagement with Lagosians that has embraced the tech revolution. The seriousness of the work on these temporal platforms encourages a conscious observation of viewers’ surroundings in a city where everything is constantly in a rush. The ultimate external objective of the project is to hone a paradigm shift in how the city is perceived and appreciated by a global audience.
The beauty I have found even in the barest forms offers a lasting artistic satisfaction irrespective of the city’s feistiness. At heart, this is a love affair with Lagos as canvas and muse.