Journey of the Nomad: Nigeria to Ghana…
OBI Nwaegbe’s, Tainted Vision 11 is another solo exhibition that projects the creative effort of the young and talented artist in the use of colors , palette knife and brush to evolving a diplomatic platform for mutual understanding among ethnicities, countries and institutions.
Being an offshoot of the emerging artist’ imaginative recollection of a memorable sojourn among the dominant Fulani nomads in the Northern part of Nigeria during his national Youths service programme, the project premiered at a solo show tagged, Tainted Visions( Nomadic Series) in 2010 at the Omenka Gallery, Ikoyi Lagos.
Life of Fulani nomads
At that well received exhibition, Nwaegbe’s experimental mind employed the realistic mode in the narrativization of the life of the Fulani nomads, whose enchanting and pure naturalistic sense of living helped to quicken the fertilization of his artistic creative impulse.
From that short encounter with an apparently harsh weather and topography of the North and coupled with a closer association with the largely peasant nomads, his previous misconception deriving from poor knowledge about the culture and people of the predominantly Islamic North became demystified.
That journey to the home of the Fulani nomads for Nwaegbe became an ephiphanous experience. In a very creative sense, it turned out to be a journey in self recovery. A recovery from disillusionment to a new creative home coming, whereby misconception gives birth to understanding.
According to the artist, “the project is not a blue print on how we can or should make progress as a unified entity. But an artist’s personal examination of a multi – ethnic society in which he was born and has lived virtually all his life.”
It was this new sense of understanding that resulted in an artistic documentation and interpretation of some of the verifiable positive values about human relationships and understanding that the view gleans from the artist’s imaginative story about the nomads. Through Nwaegbes’s brilliant compositions, one is led in a journey around the romantic and easy going life style of the people.
The compositions rendered in arresting and brilliant colors, from beneath the faces of pretty and harmless looking maidens convey the story of love, tolerance, rich culture and about the philosophy of contentedness. Tainted Visions provides a panoramic view of the topography of the region of the Sahara North and makes it for better appreciation of the challenges of desertification in the present age of global environmental disorder.
The success of the maiden edition of Tainted Vision as a veritable means of using visual vehicle to communicate understanding, peace and tolerance among diverse groups through realistic narrativization of social, cultural and philosophical ethos is therefore the forerunner of the present exhibition tagged, Tainted Vision 11.
Holden at Alliance Francaise office in the Accra city of Ghana, this second leg of Nwaegbe’s nomadic series is equally committed to the employment of the power of visual communication in confronting communication challenges among nations.
“Tainted Visions II is presenting a continental dimension to the issue of cultural diversity within the African sociopolitical and economic circle and a case study between Nigeria and Ghana is examined here.” He said.
In the present exhibition, Nwaegbe’s works largely done on acrylic on canvass and pastel compositions explore the Nomadic life of Nigeria and the Ewes of Ghana in an enigmatic mix depicted in costume, attitude and aura. The exhibition is geared towards examining prospects in the strengthening of diplomatic ties between the two African nations: Nigeria and Ghana, as a fundamental way of improving communication for profitable engagement in business and commerce.
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