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With Ibile, Fagurosi interrogates senior citizens on canvass

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Segun Fagurosi’s first solo arts show, titled Ibile, is set to open at the Mydrim Arts Gallery, Lagos from September 11. The paintings depict elderly people in rural settings.

Fagurosi said this body of work was inspired by his participation in a church event, which provided medical support for the elderly in the rural communities.

The event afforded him opportunity to relate closely with the elderly, and they, in turn, were excited and grateful that the church and youths were interested in their wellbeing.

Sharing details of their challenges Fagurosi said: “Many felt abandoned by their children who had migrated to the cities and were struggling to make ends meet. Their stories of working very hard in their youth and the failure of the successive governments to provide them with the basic infrastructure, health facilities, good schools and their gratuity broke his heart.”

The artist was however, very impressed with their simple community development projects and stoic, positive and joyful manner in which they got on with their lives and his perception of elderly people soon changed. “Their wrinkled skin and basic lifestyle took on a new interpretation. Instead of mundane and uncut, I saw resilience, strength of character, dignity of labour, hope and joy in the midst of adversity. There were a repository of knowledge and I learnt a lot from them and was inspired to use them as my muses and started painting my experiences with them on canvasses.”

He hopes that the exhibition with a private preview holds on September 9 and 10 will cause the audience to have more compassion on the elderly, treat them kindly and make them a point of priority.

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