By Oji Onoko
There was touch of class and sass as the National Gallery of Art (NGA) opened its Art Fair in Lagos featuring Drawings and Prints of Master Artists. Date was Tuesday, December 7, 2021 at the Aina Onabolu Gallery, National Theatre Annex. A cultural Troupe entertained with intricate foot-works and well-choreographed dance sequences. There was also the “Eyo” dance synonymous with Lagos State executed in slow motion.
In his welcome address, the Director General, NGA, Chief Ebeten William Ivara said the exhibition will expose some of the treasures in our National Collection. “The public will thus be enlightened about the artistic progression of Nigerian Visual Arts. This way, they will better appreciate the wealth of the cultural value embedded in the works of the master artists.” He said the exhibition will be open for a month to enable many Nigerians see and appreciate the art works of the masters.
Declaring the exhibition open, well known art collector and Trustee, Guild of Fine Artists of Nigeria, Ede Dafinone commended NGA for the exhibition of the art works of master artists in the Art Fair. “I will gladly pay to view this exhibition,” he added. He said the idea of having the Art Fair in other parts of the country as revealed by the Director General is a step in the right direction.
Director, Curatorial Services, Dr. Simon Ikpakronyi conducted the audience round the exhibition putting in context the art works on display. Artists whose art works featured in the exhibition include: Bruce Onobrakpeya, Solomon Irein Wangboje, David H. Dale, Gani Odutokun, Tunde Ogunlaiye, Kwe Odu, Theresa Luck Akinwale and Morakinyo.
Among the high profile personalities present at the opening of the exhibition are: Prof. Bruce Onobrakpeya, Ede Dafinone, Chief (Mrs.) Nike Davies Okundaye represented by Ms. Ayoola Omovo, Chief Adebanjo Fasuyi, Dr. Kolade Oshinowo, Chairman, Society of Nigerian Artists (SNA), Lagos chapter, Olojo Kosoko K. K. and Dr. Mudiare Onobrakpeya among others.