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For International Women’s Day, artists celebrate with Destiny II

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Nine Nigerian female artists across different media of visual expressions join the rest of the world in celebrating 2021 International Women’s Day in a group show titled, Destiny II.

The show holds from March 13 to 20, 2021 at Alexis Galleries, Victoria Island, Lagos to mark the yearly global event.

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The artists are Ayoola Omovo, Aisha Idirisu, Bimpe Owoyemi, Naomi Oyeniyi, Clara Aden, Jenny Ojeh, Karen Ogidi, Esther Obiwuru and Ronke Ladipo.

The show, Destiny, debuted in 2019 with the assurance to make it a yearly event.

Recalling that the first edition was shown in 2019 and featured 15 female artists, Patty Chidiac-Mastrogiannis, who is director and founder at Alexis Galleries, noted that the 2021 IWD campaign is themed ‘Choose to Challenge’, which she summarised as challenging gender bias and inequality.

For Destiny II, she said it features the dynamic works these women choose to challenge with their creativity and skills.

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“With the aesthetic quality of the works to be exhibited, they have communicated their statements and views about issues that concern them and also crafted their space and position in the world at large with their art, Chidiac-Mastrogiannis stated, adding that the show is a good mix of ladies.

The curator said, personally, the IWD celebration means honouring “every woman in my life, my mother, sisters, and others.”

One of the artists, Ladipo said she is showing sculptures from her Padlock Bag series. The series, she explained, represent protection from unwanted intervention. More than a bag, the series, Ladipo said, is a symbolic representation of security. “It’s an attention-seeking bags, which I have been doing for 10 years.”

Ojeh, who specialises in graphics, said her works explain how every woman is beautiful in her own right, though not in “the way society wants us to be.”

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Idrisu recalled that her insistence on being herself manifested as a student who changed from engineering to art. And as an artist, “I like to experiment with as many styles as possible and don’t like to be pinned down to a particular style. I am too emotional to get attached to a form or style. Among her works for the exhibition is a series titled Dignity in Labour, in charcoal.

The show is in partnership with Women At Risk International Foundation (WARIF) a not-for-profit organisation, that raises global awareness and advocate against the prevalence of violence against women and girls, by donating part of the exhibition proceeds to its course.

Sponsoring the show are; Pepsi, Tiger, Indomie, Mikano, The Guardian, Wazobia Fm Radio, Cool Fm, Ups, Haier Thermocool, Cobranet, Delta Airlines, Aina Blankson, The Homestores, Art Café, And Lost In Lagos, Arzeh Integrated Ltd and AMG Logistics.

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In her curatorial note, Chidiac-Mastrogiannis stated: “Ayoola is a professional artist with over 12 years’ experience in painting and also as an instructor. Her core functional expertise dwells on black and white rendition technic in abstract painting. Aisha Idirisu is practising and an art instructor for children with special needs. She is an abstract painter with a bold and colourful impasto rendition. Bimpe is prolific in the use of oil. Her style is narrowed down to the manipulation and display of light, the glorification of light in the dark. Naomi is a contemporary painter whose works had been shown home and abroad as she is proficient with oil and a few major project on mural paintings. Aden is a passionate painter known for her mind-blowing pencil drawing. Her drawings have been celebrated internationally at Global Images of U.S Women, Pennyslynivia in 2015, and recently at the Amref Artball in 2019 and 2020.

“Ojeh works with sand and charcoal as her major medium. Her charcoal works as well as the sand often have more than one interpretation, thus allowing for more superficial contemplation. Ogidi has always had a passion to express herself through painting, specializing in the use of palette knives and oil paint, and draws inspiration from the colours in nature and people in moments of hustle and solitude. While Obiwuru Esther is a prolific painter that draws inspiration from her environment and wants the world to see the beauty of life through her art. Ronke produces a padlock bag made from this powerful material but is polarized with the delicate strokes of a brush to uphold her conception of the divine feminine, strong and yet delicate.”

The exhibition is also on a virtual tour from the opening day, on the gallery’s social media handles; Instagram- alexisgalleries, Facebook- Thehomestores Alexisgalleries. The exhibition promises to be intriguing for both virtual and live views.

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