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Discovering Potentials Across Nigerian Borders Through Road Trips

RoadTripsPost
Posted: May 23, 2016 at 4:33 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Yemi Adebisi – Lagos

 

Over the past five years, the Invisible Borders Trans-African Project has focused on promoting Trans-African exchange across countries in Africa through various artistic interventions of which the most prominent is the Trans-African Road Trips.

The latest edition was the 141-day Road Trip from Lagos, Nigeria to Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

This year, the group contiEmeka Okerekenues in the same tradition, but instead will be looking at the Borders Within.

From May 12 to June 26, 2016, a team of nine participants including seven artists and two administrators will travel by road across 14 states in all regions of Nigeria.

The aim of the project, according to the organisers, is to engage in the conversation about diversity, making attempt to offer a map of it, across regions, states and ethnic formation in what we know as Nigeria today.

The years after the northern and southern Nigerian protectorates was amalgamated into a single British colony, the remarkable diversity of the country remains apparent.

In 2016, Invisible Borders will aim to map this diversity through a road trip across Nigeria; hoping, as a result, to underscore the borders that are both inscribed and elusive within the country.

In a communiqué from its organisers, the group was determined to close ranks with all the states of the federation with the aim of showcasing the emblem of one Nigeria.

The artists of the road trip will travel across 14 states, making about 15 stops in cities scattered across all the regions of the country. Photographers, filmmakers and writers invited to participate in the six-week road trip will undertake to produce images and text that reflect impressionistic, yet critical readings of contemporary Nigeria.

The participants would meet, converse, dine, play and live withNigerians from all walks of life, with hopes that the works produced eventually will be precipitates of those encounters.

This project follows in the tradition of the artistic road trip intervention established by Invisible Borders in the course of five editions.

This implies that the artists will travel together in the same vehicle, all the while living, working and interacting with each oEllen Kondowether. The route will be fluid, allowing for detours, but equally encompassing. Beginning in and returning to Lagos, the artists will move circularly through several Nigerian cities and towns whose history shaped and continue to shape a contemporary Nigerian identity.

Each participating artist will be tasked with developing one major body of work as a follow-up to the trip. Writers will be required to produce long travel essays (of up to 7,000 words), while photographers will be required to produce at least an encompassing body of workfrom the trip.

In addition, Invisible Borders will present several short, personal, narratives by residents of the towns and cities en-route, with the aim of creating a crowd-sourced narrative of contemporary Nigeria. The narratives, combined, will be made into a lengthy documentary film. Loose and non-linear, the film will underscore the improbability of reducing Nigeria to a single voice, or way of telling.

Participants

Zaynab O. Odunsi is a Saudi based Nigerian photographer who works as a full time lecturer at Dar Al Hekma University, Jeddah.

 

She holds an MA in Photography from the University of the Arts London, LCC producing a portfolio on the topic, Stereotypes of masculinity in post colonial West Africa; Nigeria in focus.

Emeka Okereke, born in 1980 is a Nigerian photographer who lives and works between Africa and Europe, moving from one to the other on a frequent basis.

Member of renowned Nigerian photography collective, Depth of Field (DOF), he came in contact with photography in 2001.

Uche Okonkwo, born on September 30, 1988 is a writer and editor, with an MA in Creative Writing from the Centre for New Writing, University of Manchester, UK, and several years of experience in publishing. She Emmanuel Idumaworks as managing editor at Kachifo Limited (publishers of Farafina Books) in Lagos.

Yinka Elujoba was born March 11, 1991. He studied Engineering at Obafemi Awolowo University and finished in 2014. In 2010 he won the EditRed Poetry Challenge.

Yinka is a Nigerian writer. His essays are meditative with a focus on literary and art criticism, as well as how shifts in spaces affect the human condition.

Yagazie Emezi, born in 1989, is a multi-disciplinary artist and photographer based in Lagos, Nigeria. She studied Cultural Anthropology and African Studies in the United States with a focus on cultism in Nigerian universities and the cultural preservation of the African aesthetic.

Emmanuel Iduma, born and raised in Nigeria, is a writer and art critic. He is the author of the novel Farad and co-editor of Gambit: Newer African Writing.

He has contributed essays on art and Photography to a number of journals, magazines, and exhibition catalogues, including Guernica, ESOPUS, and The Trans-African, for which he works as managing editor.

Eloghosa Osunde is a writer and photographer who lives in and works from Lagos. Her work in photography and writing is a constant attempt to gain insight into social and personal complexities.

Innocent is an amateur photographer, a content developer and project manager with a bachelor’s degree in English from Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria.

His interests vary wildly- from art to technology, social media, traditional journalism, educational reforms, movie reviews, to mention but a few. He is an IT enthusiast, a media analyst and a literary critic.

Ellen is a Malawian-South African, born in 1992, a Fashion Graduate of Spero Villiioti Elite Design in Johannesburg, South Africa, whilst at SVEDA she completed the Parsons New School of Design,

Beginners and Advanced Design and Illustration courses.