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IMCAF… Impacting and providing platform for artists to thrive

By Omiko Awa
27 August 2017   |   4:23 am
A former governor of Cross River State, Donald Duke, will chair this year’s Life In My City Art Festival (LIMCAF) Gala and Award night billed to hold in Enugu on Saturday, October 28.

Prof, El Anatsui; Elder K. U. Kalu; Oba Otudeko; Obi of Onitsha, Nnaemeka Alfred Achebe; Chief Loretta Aniagolu and Consul-General of French Embassy, Laurent Polonceaux, at the cutting of LIMCAF’s 10th anniversary cake

• Donald Duke To Chair 2017 Edition
A former governor of Cross River State, Donald Duke, will chair this year’s Life In My City Art Festival (LIMCAF) Gala and Award night billed to hold in Enugu on Saturday, October 28. In a release, the Executive Director, LIMCAF, Mr. Kevin Ejiofor, said the former Cross River State governor will chair the grand finale, which will be studded with art exhibitions, photo workshop, multimedia workshop, night of live music, among others.

According to Ejiofor, the founder of CLAM and filmmaker, Andy Okoroafor, will lead the workshop. While speaking on the festival, Professor Jerry Buhari, one of Nigeria’s foremost visual artists and a former jury head, said: “LIMCAF draws art works from the length and breadth of the entire country: Abuja, Auchi, Enugu, Ibadan, Kaduna, Lafia, Lagos, Owerri Port Harcourt and Uyo. This covers the six geo-political zones of Nigeria. These cities are capital cities that represent, perhaps, the greatest and most vibrant cultural centres that represent the diversity of Nigeria. LIMCAF symbolises a quiet cultural revival that would one day give birth to a mega art festival like Documenta.”

While commenting on past events, Buhari stated that the festival had featured works that capture some of our ailments, “our spirit of celebration amid economic gloom,” adding that through LIMCAF, for example, “we can see how the common man, represented by the artists, who made entries for completion, have devised innovative use of unconventional materials, techniques and styles in the works they have submitted.

“You will observe that their subject matter will be topical, drawing deeply from the roots of the complex and delicate fabric of the country.

“On the negative side of the coin, we can see where the root cause of lawlessness, corruption and chaos can be found. The absence of good governance produces greed, selfishness, impunity and the entire negative vices that threaten corporate existence.

“Artists, by their very nature, draw from the wealth of their experiences, surroundings and interpret these visually based on their unique ability to see. Their capacities to empathise, visualise, respond, interpret and challenge our perception of both the physical and emotional world enrich the entirety of human existence. Often they envision the future for us in such a way that some assume prophetic status.”

While listing some of the impact of the festival on the nation, the university teacher noted that the festival has created tangible platforms for the public to appreciate art and also increase the public’s knowledge and interest, leading to the creation of more sponsors and patronage of the arts. He noted that apart from the exposure, a critical tourism component has been added to the festival.

According to Buhari, “LIMCAF has added and continues to build professionalism, cooperation in art practice, adventure and network friendship across the six geo-cultural boundaries. Art festivals encourage experimentation with materials, techniques and the sharing of ideas. This advances the development of the arts on a global level.

“Enugu State Government, the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, represented by its various relevant parastatals, should have LIMCAF in their budgets, cultural calendar and create a desk in their offices dedicated to handling festivals like this. Channels of collaboration between these organs should have been well established by now. The organisers of LIMCAF should be part of the Think Tank of Cultural Change in today’s government.”