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With Erewele, You Haven’t Seen It All


The Voyage (acrylic, 36’x36’)

Taiye Oseiza Erewele, a female contemporary artist, last Friday, ended her maiden solo show titled, ‘ You Haven’t Seen It All’.

Held at the National Museum, Lagos, it dwelt on Erewele’s creative journey and how it has evolved over the years. The artist exhibited 20 paintings in acrylic and mixed media.

“It shows my new approach, which allows for spontaneity of my creative impulse to take charge, as opposed to pre-meditated expressions. I am using this as a platform to also express my views on some societal issues, especially as they affect women. This first solo show is very significant, because it marks 10 years of graduating from art school.”


On the concept of ‘You Haven’t Seen It All’, Erewele said, “I knew I would be doing different things that are genuine; things that I have not seen from anywhere, because I was working with my mind, instead of working with my eyes.

“I decided to work intuitively and spontaneously, and I got to mindless art. I can just create art and explore its quality of lines and colours.”

Erewele’s concern for expectations and verdict of the audience regarding artistic output restricted her choices and streamlined creations to the detriment of her genuine impulse or inner persuasions.

According to the curator, Mr. Luciano Uzuegbu, “the story of her artistic sojourn reads like the sort of banter between our metaphoric ‘outer’ and ‘inner’ voices often experienced at the critical stage of creative decisions.

“A thoroughbred realist, she seemed to have retained the conscious practice of a scholar under the scrutiny and examination of a tutor, and continually struggled with a secondary opinion during her creative process.”

Working with her mind, as opposed to allowing (external) secondary sentiments is always going to launch her into possible new territories including, abstract representations, a challenge she appears well reconciled to, as she pursues ultimate fulfilment in her career.

She reveals her frustration with being monotonous, which has now been replaced by ‘being factual and truthful.’ This simply means creating a less premeditated art and allowing for intuition to win her satisfaction, even when it is not in agreement with what she considers academic artistic demands and popular expectations.

Led by a thought, an idea or a spark in a spontaneous expose, the artist is unaware of the destination of creation, at least, until such a time she is also led by impulse to sign off the work as finished. Beyond the idea of a subject, the important thing for the artist is embracing such a rendering that ingratiates the impulse and inspiration behind that adventure; often with also a prospect of delivering an end, which surprises the artist as a new discovery.

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