The Ben Enwonwu Foundation in collaboration with the Society of Nigerian Artists and supported by Alliance Française /Mike Adenuga Centre Lagos, will on January 24, present the fourth edition of its monthly series of talks ‘Point of View’(POV 4). It will hold at Alliance Française/Mike Adenuga Centre, Ikoyi, Lagos.
The fourth edition, themed ‘Art as a Driver for Environmental Sustainability’ advocates for sustainable cities and communities by promoting interdisciplinary collaborations between professionals across such diverse sectors as government, the arts, science and technology, to highlight the significant role of the visual arts in ensuring policy frameworks that address climate change.
A call to action, POV 4 will discuss the different aspects and the dimension of the phenomenon, subsequently conveying to the government, recommendations and creative solutions to negate its impact. In line with its thrust, this edition will also feature presentations by artists on how they have adopted environmentally sustainable practices in conceptualising work from recycled waste, created wealth, raised awareness and engaged local communities.
The programme is as scheduled below:
Making Our Futures: The Intersection of Culture and the Environment by Desmond Majekodunmi, Chairman, Lagos State Urban Forest and Animal Shelter Initiative (LUFASI)
Waste to Wealth: The Growing Market for Recycled Art by Sandra Mbanefo-Obiago, Founder and Director, SMO Contemporary Art
The Role of Education in Propelling Climate Change: Five Cowries Initiative, a Case Study by Polly Alakija, Chairman, Lagos State Council for Arts and Culture
Polly Alakija in Conversation with Lucy Latham, Policy and City Programme Lead, Julie’s Bicycle, UK
How Can Research, Data Gathering and Education Make a Difference?
Sean Melbourne, Head of Climate Change and Energy, West Africa, British High Commission Abuja; Prof OluwatoyinAdejonwo-Osho, Faculty of Law, University of Lagos; Dr Andrew S. Nevin, Advisory Partner and Chief Economist, PwC West Africa
The panel will be moderated by Tunde Arogunmati, Principal Consultant, Toff Resources Nigeria Ltd.
There will also be a display by Five Cowries Arts Education Initiative on the evening.This event is proudly supported by Jackson, Etti& Edu, Ventures Platform, BusinessDay, Connect Nigeria The Sole Adventurer, WildflowerPR, Outsource IT Services and Omenka.
Social media handles
Instagram – @pointofviewlagos
Twitter – @POVLagos
Facebook – Point of View Lagos
YouTube – Point of View
About the Speakers
Award-winning Nigerian environmentalist, Desmond Majekodunmi chairs the Lagos state Urban Forest and Animal Shelter Initiative (LUFASI). A certified experimental extension farmer for IITA Ibadan, he owns and operates Majekodunmi Agricultural Projects, the sole agro forestry- based conservation farm in Lagos, part of which is dedicated to LUFASI park.
Majekodunmi currently serves on the governing council of the Nigerian conservation foundation, where he chairs the awareness committee that assisted in introducing ecology to the Nigerian school curriculum, and in establishing a national environment protection agency and national parks authority.
He is a past president and current trustee of legacy 1995 group – a historical and environmental interest organisation.
Desmond Majekodunmi also lectures frequently on ecological management and climate change. In addition, he is an author, script/songwriter and documentary filmmaker. His work includes a German green party commission to produce a film on climate change in Nigeria.
Sandra Mbanefo-Obiago is an art curator, photographer, poet and award-winning filmmaker. She is the founder and Director of SMO Contemporary Art, which specialises in curating art exhibitions in non-traditional gallery spaces.
Prior to establishing SMO, Mbanefo-Obiago covered for eight years, environment and development projects in sub-Saharan Africa as a photo journalist with WWF International, an environmental group. In 1998, she also founded Lagos-based Communicating for Change (CFC), a medium for development social enterprise, which became an important content provider for local and international television stations. Her award-winning films and radio programmes focused on human rights, women’s empowerment, HIV and AIDS, environmental issues, democracy and good governance, as well as art for development.
Sandra Mbanefo-Obiago is a Fellow of the Aspen Institute’s African Leadership Initiative for West Africa (ALIWA). She received a Bachelor’s degree in education with a specialisation in English and German languages and literature from the University of Manitoba, as well as a Master’s in telecommunications from Michigan State University.
Polly Alakija moved from the UK to Nigeria in 1989. She is now based in Lagos from where she runs her studio.
As a visual artist, she has exhibited in Nigeria, SA and UK. As an educator, Alakija has engaged communities at different levels, from primary health care programmes to teacher training. Her studio designs and delivers community-driven programmes.
She is Chairperson of Lagos State Council for Art and Culture and works as a cultural advisor in the public and private sectors on both technical strategy and programming.
Polly Alakija is co-founder of the Five Cowries Arts Initiative, which leverages the arts to offer an inclusive route to education by enhancing educator capacity for positive educational and environmental outcomes.
In partnership with MOE+ Architects and A White Space Creative Agency, Polly Alakija develops creative urban spaces.
Professor Oluwatoyin Adejonwo-Osho
Professor OluwatoyinAdejonwo-Osho is a lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of Lagos where she teaches environmental law and civil liberties and human rights. She has also taught EU and UK environmental law at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels at universities in Scotland.
Professor Adejonwo-Osho’s expertise covers international environmental law, her experience directly related to climate change and sustainable development policy. Her PhD thesis was on the Kyoto Protocol’s flexibility mechanisms – the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).
Adejonwo-Osho is an accredited expert for The Climate Change Media Partnership (CCMP), an organisation of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), United Kingdom.
Andrew S. Nevin
Andrew S. Nevin holds a PhD in economics from Harvard University, an MA in philosophy and politics from Balliol College, Oxford University where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar, and a Bachelors in computer science and mathematics from the University of Western Ontario, Canada.
Dr Nevin is an Advisory Partner and Chief Economist in PwC West Africa. He is recognised as a leading global thinker on economics, strategy, capital markets and investments.
Nevin plays several other key roles in the Nigerian public and private sectors, including the Founding Director of the Africa Institute for Leadership and Public Administration; Member of the Advisory Board at Lagos Business School; co-founder Binkabi, a blockchain-enabled trading platform; and iKon, which focuses on solar technology.
In 2011, he was named Strategy Consultant of the Year for 2010 by the Management Consultants Association in the UK.
Lucy Latham is the Policy and City Programme Lead at UK- based Julie’s Bicycle, where she started out as an environmental sustainability coordinator in 2013.
Prior to Julie’s Bicycle, she served as a sustainability officer and scientific field officer in the forests of Honduras, and as an environmental education officer in Botswana.
Today, she works with key cultural actors in the UK and internationally, delivering research, training, consultancy and advocating for the strategic integration of environmental and climate action within the cultural economy. Her work focuses on the role of culture in driving urban transformation, convening cultural and environmental stakeholders in cities, and supporting cultural policy aligned to the Paris Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals.
Lucy Latham holds a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental science from Newcastle University and a Master of Science degree in social and political theory from Birkbeck, University of London.
Sean Melbourne serves as the Head of Climate Change and Energy West Africa with the British High Commission, Abuja. From 2016 till 2019, he was the British High Commission’s Deputy Head of Mission (DHM) to Albania, prior to which he performed as the DHM to Zambia for 3 years, and Head of Political Section in Baghdad.
About Point of View (POV)
Initiated by The Ben Enwonwu Foundation in collaboration with the Society of Nigerian Artists and supported by Alliance Française /Mike Adenuga Centre Lagos, ‘Point of View’(POV) is a monthly series of talks interrogating the evolving role of the visual arts in addressing major issues affecting Africa and the rest of the world.
Launched on September 17, 2019, POV draws from other creative disciplines and such diverse sectors as government, science and technology, to impact policy by raising awareness, advocating for change and inspiring action. It aims to further encourage support and funding for visual artists through public and private sector partnership while ensuring continuing artists’ professional development and empowerment.
POV 1: A Case for the Artist’s Resale Right in Nigeria (September 17, 2019)
The first edition of ‘Point of View’ titled ‘A Case for the Artist’s Resale Right in Nigeria’ advocated for visuals artists benefitting from secondary and downstream sales of their works, much like novelists and musicians. Indeed, their income pales in comparison to those other creatives, mainly because they do not earn significantly from the reproduction and communications rights provided to other creators under copyright law.
The artist’s resale right seeks to correct this anomaly by ensuring artists receive a small percentage of the re-sale price of a work. Although this right is recognised in the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (Article 14ter), which sets minimum international copyright standards, it is optional, with only about 80 countries in adherence.
POV 2: Raising Capital Against High Value Works of Art (October 17, 2019)
The second edition of ‘Point of View’ titled ‘Raising Capital Against High Value Works of Art’ was informed by mounting global interest on art from the continent and a steady growth of the collectors’ base within Africa and especially in Nigeria. It sought to encourage the growing recognition of Nigerian art as a new alternative asset class while providing a deeper understanding of the appraising of art holdings for liquidation, and of using art as collateral for lending transactions such as financing business expansions and investments or high-end purchases. It also aimed to support the development of art investment products, as well as the diversification of investment portfolios with the integration of art.
POV 3: Museums, Tourism and Urban Development(November 22, 2019)
The third edition of Point of View titled Museums, Tourism and Urban Development addressed key issues, trends and challenges in Nigeria’s culture tourism sector. Leading architects shared their insights on the most innovative construction and design trends, using completed, on-going and upcoming projects as examples; museum specialists shed light on improving museum experiences, preservation and conservation activities, as well as the challenges they face while government authorities highlight investment opportunities and speak on museum development and destination marketing.
About The Ben Enwonwu Foundation
The Ben Enwonwu Foundation (BEF) was established in 2003 in honour of celebrated Nigerian artist, scholar, educator, art administrator and statesman, Professor Benedict ChukwukadibiaEnwonwu MBE, NNOM (1917-94).
Amongst many other accomplishments, Enwonwu was the first Nigerian artist to gain international recognition. Conferred in 1954 with the Member of the distinguished order of the British Empire, he remains the only Black artist to have been commissioned to sculpt Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. In Nigeria, Enwonwu was also the first professor of art and first federal art adviser.
Widely acclaimed as Africa’s pioneer modernist artist and one of the greatest in the world, he is credited with laying the philosophical foundations of contemporary African art by fusing Western techniques and conventions with indigenous traditions and aesthetics – his over sixty-year career embracing a broad range of socio-political and economic movements, philosophies and themes including Pan Africanism, Negritude, identity, the body (the gaze), gender equality, spirituality and religion, peace and conflict resolution.
The Foundation aims to sustain and build on his life’s work through a three-pronged approach to:
Promote, foster, explain, protect and give prestige to, in Nigeria and globally, his artistic, intellectual and political legacy by such acts as the publishing of a catalogue raisonne in volumes, of his total creative output, and the managing, defending and administering of the intangible rights derived from his work and person.
Maintain a diverse multi-disciplinary public programme of exhibitions, projects, workshops, talks and lectures that:
Explores in a research-minded way, Enwonwu’s oeuvre while increasing the visibility and appreciation of art from the African continent; and brings together professionals across such diverse sectors as the arts, government, science and technology, to advocate for change, proffer solutions and impact policy in addressing major issues affecting Africa and the rest of the world.
On-going initiatives in this regard are the ‘Ben Enwonwu Distinguished Lecture Series’ and ‘Point of View’ (POV), held in partnership with Alliance Francaise Lagos/ Mike Adenuga Centre. Both foster public understanding of the relevance of the visual arts to socio-economic advancement. Begun in 2004, the series features national and international leaders, renowned thinkers and key policymakers as speakers. Launched in 2019 as a monthly interdisciplinary talks platform, ‘ Point of View’, in addition, encourages artists’ professional development while canvassing for public-private funding for the visual arts.
As part of its year-round educational programme, BEF’s scholarship scheme benefits second-year students of the finest tertiary institutions in Nigeria. The Foundation also supports publications and research exploring the cultural and social context of Enwonwu’s art. Located along with the Foundation in the artist’s home, which lends to its historical and cultural significance, leading gallery, Omenka, represents an exceptional selection of artists whose work in varying media resonates strongly with the African continent and her related diaspora.
Promote cross-cultural ties and exchange between established and emerging artists, designers and curators, through international residencies that nurture new forms and ideas, build networks and provide mentoring opportunities and possibilities for collaborative projects.
The Ben Enwonwu Foundation has together with Alliance Francaise/ Mike Adenuga Centre, recently instituted an international artists’ residency. Open to artists of African and French descent, it welcomes applications that engage the enterprise and dynamism of Lagos, as well as the themes that preoccupied Ben Enwonwu, through much of his illustrious career.