Saturday, 9 January 2010

Nwosu-Igbo… bold strokes, deep statement

BY TAJUDEEN SOWOLE
LIFE becomes more meaningful when people, irrespective of their disciplines, get out of their comfort zones to attend to the pressing needs of their society.
This must have led painter, Nkechi Nwosu-Igbo, to extend her creative enterprise to one of the health issues affecting women – breast cancer.
At her recent outing, Not Ready to Walk Away, she addresses the ailment, expressing the need for much attention to be given to it.
In the piece, I Always Cry at the Movie — giant sculptures of two floor-length spaghetti gowns, made of used recharge card from different networks — she says, represent the urgency required to stop the spread of the disease.
Beneath the gowns was a heap of figural sculptures depicting lifeless bodies – victims of breast cancer. The composition of the figures also stresses that the ailment cuts across races; as they are in white, brown and blue colours.
The outing was the group show, Closures and Enclosures held as part of Lagos Book and Art Fair (LABAF).

In fact, Nkechi has found so much to express through telephone recharge card wastes in her past three editions. She used the medium to depict what she called Implied Walls in the exhibition, Dawning Dreams during the eighth edition of LABAF.
It could have been any cause; she says, “you need to lend your voice and passion to a cause of yours.”
Perhaps that cause is a direct calling to celebrities, who in her opinion, stand the best chance to spread the message of giving back.
Breast cancer, she notes, claims as much victims as AIDS. But the imbalance here is that it gets less awareness, so, she urges “women to go to hospital for regular check-ups.”

In the past, she had been part of several women-related causes particularly from her immediate constituency – the visual art. She featured in the all-women show Identities and Labels at Pan-African University, Ajah, Lagos; Women About Women, 2001; and Women In Visual Art (WIVA) Perspective, 2008.

THE new Lagos that Governor Babatunde Fashola, is creating, is expressed with props such as utensils, umbrella, mat and “Ghana must go” bag among others. The difference here, is that the inhabitant is not a destitute or indigent, but one who has taken up what Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo – during the last Ben Enwonwu Distinguished Lecture – described as “responsible privilege.”
The inhabitant is Nwosu-Igbo and the location, a gallery space, for the performance Ziga M Ozi (Send Me on Errand).
Still adamant not to walk away, Nkechi, also a poet, hopes to come back for a major solo outing before the

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