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With ‘Art Splash,’ school pupils celebrate Lagos@50

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Pupils of MaryMount displaying their artworks, with their teachers behind them

A myriad of monuments and noteworthy man-made landmarks in Lagos and Nigeria were at display by pupils of Marymount Nursery and Primary School as part of activities to mark the 50th anniversary of Lagos State. It was held at the school premises in Lekki and it attracted parents, friends and well-wishers.

Tagged ‘Art Splash 2017,’ it featured illustrations that included Eyo masquerade, national flag, map of Nigeria, various art works made of beads, beautiful gardens, Eko Hotel, the old molue bus, traditional attires amongst other monuments by pupils aged five and above to the admiration of guests. One striking feature of the exhibition was the degree of eloquence with which the pupils explained how they achieved their individual drawings from start to finish.

Lagos State Commissioner for Arts and Culture, Mrs. Adebimpe Akinsola, said towards moving the nation forward, students must be encouraged at all times to use their spare time meaningfully by engaging their creative impulse in arts and science that could positively project the image of the country. She stated that Nigeria’s greatest contribution to the world culture has been its traditional arts, expressed through elaborate hairdressing, crafts, and ornaments. She tasked the youth to continue to bring their creativity to bear in order to save the country’s heritage from going into extinction.

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Represented by Mr. Ajayi Lad, Akinsola noted that traditional textile designs and crafts are still alive today despite social changes and globalization, saying it was due to the persistence of Nigerians, who engage in the craft. She commended the pupils for demonstrating expertise in arts through artistic illustrations of human and non-human activities in the spirit of the anniversary of Lagos State.

Director of Marymount, Mrs. Olajumoke Dare, said the school, which started about 10 years ago, now has the Nigeria session and the Indian pupils’ session for Indians based in Nigeria as part of efforts to promote learning and cultural integration between the two countries.

She noted, “We tried to integrate as much as possible by doing a lot of extra-curricular activities together like the art splash, science fair, ICT, music, Indian celebration. The Indian pupils can sing our anthem and the Nigerian pupils can sing the Indian anthem, too. We also do sports together. However, because the India calendar is different, it is difficult to integrate on the core academic subjects.”

According to her, the exhibition was organised to discover the hidden talents of the students, and help them develop it as arts has its benefits for each child, especially in giving them the pride to do their own work and seeing the positive end-result.

“When Lagos@50 celebration came up, we saw it as an opportunity to celebrate our city where we work and relax,” she said. “Lagos is full of culture and we thought we ought to celebrate the arts we see around us. A lot of the students have tried to fix that into their work through beaded works, Lagos Street food and important features in the state. We hoped that this would also help us to teach the students about the culture of Lagos State and help the school develop as one happy family”.

Principal Cultural Officer, Lagos State Council for Arts and Culture, Mr. Omole Ekundayo, described the art works as mind-blowing considering the age of the pupils. He observed that with proper guidance, the pupils have the potentials of becoming icons of Nigerian arts and culture in future, adding that the pupils have really made good use of the opportunity given them to celebrate Lagos@50.


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