Initiated in 2016, the programme identifies, mentors and promotes early-career artists from Africa, by equipping them with tools and resources for artistic development.
Each year, the Foundation guides artists via its virtual boot camp and residency programme in Ado-Ekiti towards the creation of critical projects, encouraging innovative explorations of existing inquiries as well as the birth of fresh ideas.
This year’s edition presents new projects done over the course of 6 months by seven artists – Adeniyi Adewole, Adetutu Adediran, Hanson Okere, Yoma Emore, Seidougha Linus Eyimiegha, Elfreda Fakoya and Tosobuafo Matilda Bardi – working across a diverse range of mediums from textile material to aluminium dust; engaging complex issues from diasporic and familial identity to migration and urban traffic culture.
The Young Contemporaries 2023 project presents the audience with a collection of distinct and exciting perspectives on contemporary issues while also drawing attention to the exciting and critical work being done by a younger generation of contemporary African artists.
Yoma Emore (b. 1997) is a visual artist working across digital and textile mediums. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, where she currently lives and works, she obtained a Bachelor’s degree, in Art & Design, Media and Cultural Studies from the University of Worcester, in the UK. In 2018, she obtained a Master’s degree in Textile Design from Chelsea College of Arts (University of the Arts London), specialising in digital textile printing. Emore has since created fabric works that combine her background as a painter and her interest in more conceptual forms of visual art, using motifs, repeat patterns and text.
Adeniyi Adewole Wasiu (b. 1994) is a contemporary sculptor born in Ibadan, Nigeria. He studied Arts and Culture at the Yaba College of Technology. Adewole is also an art instructor and co-founder of the Ayowole Academy of Arts. In 2022, his work was shown in the group exhibition Crossroads by SMO Contemporary.
He currently lives and works in Lagos.
Adetutu Adediran (b. 1999) is a visual artist and conceptual photographer. Born in Osun, Nigeria, she graduated with a B.Tech in Chemistry, from the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology. Working with conceptual photography, Adediran presents meticulously posed and arranged images that employ symbolism in representing ideas on masculinity, identity and migration. Her work is influenced by her experience and stories from her environment.
Tofo Bardi (b. 2001) is a visual artist who draws inspiration from the depths of the human mind and enjoys working with the subject of altered consciousness. She holds a B.A from the University of Benin specialising in Painting. In her works, Bardi presents an intense preoccupation with states of the mind, rites of passage and an expressive representation of the real and unreal.
Seidougha Linus Eyimiegha (aka Mr. Danfo) (b. 1991) holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Delta State University, specialising in painting. His work is spurred by his everyday Lagos experiences and engages local art forms, contemporary designs, and popular culture. He re-enacts these stories in his paintings utilising colour, geometric shapes, graphic design and installations; blurring the boundaries between painting and graphic design.
Elfreda Fakoya (b. 1995) is a Nigerian multidisciplinary artist living and working between London and Lagos. Her design process is influenced by broad research into cultural theory and diasporic identities as seen through clothing and customaries. Fakoya studied Fashion Design at Ravensbourne University and has since incorporated garment production and print techniques in her work.
Born in 1993 in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, Hanson Okere studied Fine Arts at the University of Port Harcourt. Working with pyrography techniques, he creates illustrative scenes that draw from personal experiences and reflections. Okere currently works from his home studio in Lagos, Nigeria.
The exhibition will be on view from the 8th of January until the 18th of February 2023. For more information, please visit Rele Gallery.