Victor Ehikhamenor & Osaretin Ighile | A WALK IN THE NIGHT
Opening 6pm, 21 April
Exhibition runs until 22 April - 15 May 2016
HAZARD Gallery is proud to present two prominent Nigerian artists in a two-man exhibition. This is the second of its’ kind at HAZARD, the first being a presentation of Zimbabwean artists Gresham Tapiwa Nyaude and Wycliff Mundopa. All of the work made for this exhibition was produced during the artist’s residencies at the NIROX Foundation in the Cradle of Humankind.
HAZARD has a strong relationship with NIROX and both artists will also feature in the NIROX Winter Sculpture Exhibition this May, their largest exhibition yet and this year in collaboration with Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
Victor Ehikhamenor is an artist, photographer, poet and writer born in Nigeria. Ehikhamenor has been prolific in producing abstract, symbolic and politically motivated works with unmistakable ties to his old Benin Kingdom background. His works are influenced by duality of African traditional religion and the interception of Western beliefs, memories and nostalgia as related to history and politics. His symbols and motifs are reminiscent of his childhood village shrines art as well as the Catholicism that was inherent in his village.
Ehikhamenor’s images always work as a proliferation of forms – of figures, shapes and appearances. A number of his canvasses can be folded into deliberate forms, becoming personable objects on display. Ever the storyteller, regardless of how his works are rendered on the surface – by charcoal, acrylic, enamel, nail perforations – his intent is that these images portend an enchanted world inspired by folktales and city life, by stories real and imagined. Ehikhamenor has had numerous exhibitions and residencies with strong following in Africa, the United States, Asia, the UK and other parts of Europe. His fictional short story “Madam” and drawings “Postcards from Italy” were part of the German pavilion in the 56th Venice Biennale, “All the World's Future”, curated by Okwui Enwezor in 2015. He was also one of the eleven Nigerian artists at the 2015 Jogja Biennale in Indonesia where he displayed two massive installations made from hundreds of old oil drums titled “The Wealth of Nations”.
As a writer he has published numerous fiction and critical essays with academic journals, mainstream magazines and newspapers round the world including New York Times, BBC, CNN Online, Washington Post, Farafina, AGNI magazine, Wasafiri magazine and others. Ehikhamenor was the creative director of the award winning Next Newspapers in Lagos, where he also maintained the socio-political satiric column, Excuse Me!. He has designed and redesigned many other newspapers like the national newspaper Daily Times where he was the CEO and Editor-in-Chief. He has also designed book covers for award winning authors and organizations like The Caine Prize for Africa Fiction in London, Obsidian Literary Magazine, Chimamanda Adichie, Helon Habila, Chika Unigwe, Lola Shoneyin, Akashic Publishers, New York, Chinelo Okparanta and many others.
In 2013, Ehikhamenor collaborated with the celebrated Nigerian fashion designer Ituen Basi to create the eclectic Ekemini collection which has been featured in Vogue Italia, Mercedes-Benz Fashion show and more. In 2015, he started a peace initiative, INK NOT BLOOD, using art, writing, cartoons and lectures to promote national peace in Nigeria.His book EXCUSE ME!, a satirical creative non-fiction view of life as a Nigerian both at home and abroad is a recommended text in two Nigerian universities. Ehikhamenor maintains a studio in Lagos, Nigeria and Maryland, United States.
B.A. 1991 (Ambrose Alli University, Nigeria.)
MSc. (University of Maryland, University College, Adelphi, Maryland USA)
MFA 2008 (University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland USA)
Osaretin Ighile was born in Benin City, Nigeria. He studied sculpture, painting and performance at Auchi Polytechnic and earned a BFA at the University of Benin in Nigeria, before coming to the United States. He earned his MFA in Sculpture from Queens College, New York.
Select exhibitions include Dak'Art: the Dakar Biennial in Dakar, Senegal, VOLTA NY in New York City, the art mega yacht Seafair in Connecticut and a traveling exhibition sponsored by The World Bank in Washington, DC among others, as well as group and solo shows in the US and Nigeria.
His work is included in several private and public collections including Blachere Foundation, France, Treasure House, Lagos and the French Embassy, Lagos. He resides in Brooklyn, NY. In the US, he is represented by Skoto Gallery, NYC. This is his second showing at HAZARD Gallery.