Victor Ehikhamenor’s full rap sheet of achievements is as sprawling as it is towering. The multi-talented creative who counts being a visual artist, writer and photographer, as elements of his artistic arsenal has achieved notable feats such as: delivering cover art for multiple award-winning novels by Chimamanda Adichie and Helon Habila; published a poetry collection, ‘Sordid Tales’; represented Nigeria alongside talented artists, Peju Alatise and Qudus Onikeku, in the country’s debut showing at the 57th Venice Bienniale in 2017; and only last year, launched the multi-modal co-working space, ‘Angels and Muses’.
In collaboration with Rele Gallery, Victor Ehikhamenor has just launched a public solo exhibition, titled “Daydream Esoterica”. Per the Rele Gallery website, “The body of work in the series takes an introspective look at the artist as a conscious contemporary nomad living, leaving and thriving in a city that feeds its inhabitants’ dreams and frustration and by its sheer nature demands that in order to survive – one must daydream”.
The artist, who draws influences from traditional motifs and religious cosmology, will showcase a culmination of years of his worldly artistic experiences and adventures, with Lagos at its core, on “Daydream Esoterica”, his first solo exhibition in the city in eight years. Announcing the exhibition’s launch with a picture at the installation—made from thousands of plastic sunglasses—“Daydreamer’s Paradise (Dream for Free)”, Victor wrote on his Instagram page: “As kids when we wore our plastic colourful sunglasses, our honest dreams began…we walked on air because the glasses changed the village topography to a dreamland. I welcome you to my dreamer’s paradise where Uwessan village meets Lagos Balogun and Sura markets. May your dreams come true!”
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I would wait for mom to come back from Uromi market, she knew where to get the finest pair. Christmas in Uwessan would be knocking furiously on our doors accompanied by a gentle harmattan breeze. Papingo the tailor would have made my clothes already. Dad would have bought Bata shoes weeks before. But all these wouldn’t make sense if you didn’t have sunglasses to complete the deck. On Christmas Day, after getting dressed Mom would unwrap my sunglasses aka “spectacle” aka “goggles” and carefully adjust them on my face. Everything would look kaleidoscopically beautiful. As kids when we wore our plastic colourful sunglasses, our honest dreams earnestly began…we walked on air because the glasses changed the village topography to a dreamland. I welcome you to my “Dreamers Paradise” where Uwessan village meets Lagos Balogun and Sura markets. May your dream come true! Thanks to @rele team and the assistants from different parts of Lagos that made this happen, it takes a villager to dream but it takes a village to help with the realization. Daydream Esoterica opens today! #thankyouLagos #dreamon #uwessan #lagos #relegallery #nigeria
“Daydream Esoterica” will be at Rele Gallery from 19th of May till the 30th of June.
Featured Image Credits: Instagram/victorsozaboy
You are meeting Debola at a strange time in his life. He wandered into a dream and lost his way back. Tweet at him @debola_abimbolu