CCA, Lagos presents Araferaku by Jelili Atiku

CCA, Lagos presents Araferaku by Jelili Atiku

Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos

Badiu Olorunfunmi, early 1960s. Photograph by T.O.Atowo. Courtesy Jelili Atiku.

January 21, 2013

Jelili Atiku

24–26 January 2013

Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos
9 McEwen Street
Yaba, Lagos, Nigeria

T 234 702 836 7106

Over the past four months CCA, Lagos has presented a dynamic and diverse perspective on the idea of love through performances, performative and interactive installations, videos and films. The public programme has included a roundtable on Performance Art in West Africa with artists from Nigeria, Ghana and Ivory Coast. A literary perspective was provided by authors, poets and a playwright, highlighting the different variations of love. As this unprecedented transatlantic collaboration with The Menil Collection, Houston, and Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, St Louis, comes to a close at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos, love is celebrated through the performance of Jelili Atiku in a moving tribute to a father that he never had the opportunity to meet.  

Commissioned as part of The Progress for Love, the two-part performance piece Araferaku (2013) loosely translated from the Yoruba as “A Part of Me is Missing,” triggers personal emotions which manifest as an eulogy of a son to a father who died seven months before his birth. Araferaku takes place over three days. The first part is a forty-four hour durational meditation invoking the memory of his father. Taking place in an empty space covered floor to ceiling with wallpaper of the only fading photograph of his father, Atiku invokes the memory of a presence that is absent. Alone throughout most of the 44 hours representing an hour for each year of his life, the only person that is allowed—albeit briefly—to share in the moment is his mother, creating a trilogy that is almost transcendental. The second and final part of the performance mimics the traditional Yoruba final burial rites ceremony, blurring the boundaries between reality and fiction as an attempt is made to attain a state of closure through the public depiction of a universal emotion. 

Jelli Atiku (b. 1968) lives and works in Lagos. 

The Progress of Love presented the work of Jelili Atiku (NG), Andrew Esiebo (NG), Zaneli Muholi (SA), Adaora Nwandu (NG), Temitayo Ogunbiyi (NG), and Valerie Oka (IC). Curated by Bisi Silva with curatorial assistance by Taiye Idahor.

The presentation by Wura-Natasha Ogunji in Lagos is supported by a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. The Progress of Love is being underwritten at CCA, Lagos by the Menil Collection and the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts.

Forthcoming programmes at CCA, Lagos: January–March 2013

n.paradoxa Vol 31. Africa and Its Diaspora. January–June 2013
This special issue on Africa and its Diaspora looks at the work of contemporary women artists working in Africa, of African descent or engaged with issues of African identity highlighting the complex relationships between artists working on social and political issues in different places and countries. The articles presented take different approaches to engage individual concerns and practices to give an overview of a local artistic scene and history. The aim is not to attempt to give a definition of feminist practice across such a vast geographical region but to open up new areas of research and engagement that address the specific conditions in which these women practice in relation to the definition of feminist practice in the region. 

Volume 31 is guest-edited by Bisi Silva, a board member of n.paradoxa. ISSN:1461-0434. 96 pages with 16 in colour. 

20–22 February 2013
Explorations in Contemporary Drawing
CCA, Lagos and the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA), New York present Explorations in Contemporary Drawing, an intensive three-day workshop exploring new directions in contemporary drawing. Led by artist and 2012/13 Fulbright Scholar at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Ruby Amanze and artist and lecturer at Yaba College of Art and Technology, Lagos Odun Orimilade, the series will challenge existing notions of what it means to draw, and promote innovative dialogue and artistic exchange centered around drawing as a finished medium.

Wednesday 20 February 2013
Lecture by artist Dilomprizulike (The Junkman of Africa) 
Nigerian sculptor, performer, writer and musician Dilomprizulike will talk about his performance work and his sculptural installations as well as discuss the role of the artist as a social critic and the use of art as an instrument of societal reconstruction. 

9 March–20 April 2013
Adolphus Opara, Emissaries of an Iconic Religion 
CCA, Lagos is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of Opara’s critically acclaimed photographic series Emissaries of an Iconic Religion in Lagos. The large-scale photographs, reminiscent of classic Victorian portraiture, positions centrally the Yoruba diviners as the custodian of a traditional belief system that continues to wield considerable power in the day to day lives of the people despite the onslaught of non-indigenous religions. 
Adolphus Opara (b. 1981), lives and works in Lagos. 

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Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos
January 21, 2013

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