Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Arts of Nigeria: French Private Collections - A Must-See Exhibition

Arts of Nigeria in the French private collections - A must-see exhibition at the Musée de la civilization in Quebec - October 24, 2012 to April 21, 2013

QUEBEC CITY, Oct. 23, 2012 / CNW Telbec / - Diversity and certain aesthetic qualities, that which describes the magnificent works of the exhibition Arts of Nigeria in the French private collections at the Musée de la civilization in Quebec City October 24 2012 to 21 April 2013. This exhibition is also a missed opportunity to take a look at the strange story of passionate collectors. "A common tribute to talented artists who will unfortunately, for the majority, anonymous" (Alain Lebas, curator and art collector Nigeria).

With more than 155 million people and 250 ethnic groups spread over the whole territory, Nigeria is an African country with a great diversity of languages, customs and traditions. It is a mosaic of cultures that inextricable attend, interact, associate, sometimes conflict. Ancient villages to ancient customs alongside cities such as Lagos, where 10 million people live in Europe.

Passionate collectors
With a mission to raise awareness of the exceptional quality and diversity of Nigerian art, 26 French collectors are 187 objects in this exhibition from 44 ethnic groups in Nigeria. These works offer a fragmentary but penetrating a little known art. If, on the one hand, some believe that these works are in relation with the spirits they represent the aesthetic look of those who attend daily permits, on the other hand, to get closer to the artists who created them.

Exceptionally combined exposure time, these works often scarce and some of which are exhibited for the first time, we invite you to a meeting of those who sometimes produce a shock and sometimes turn into passion.

Works meaningful
"The exhibition Arts of Nigeria in French private collections is a major event in Quebec City, Quebec. In addition to presenting many objects rare and exceptional aesthetic quality, it unveils a geographic area rich in culture related, but diverse. It also provides an opportunity to understand and to understand the mechanisms of development of the art history still poorly known, commented the Managing Director of the Museum of Civilization, Michel Côté. This is often due to avid collectors, as those who have been approached for this exhibition, we are faced with major objects, and meaningful reflection. They clearly have a weight historical, social and aesthetic power, said Mr. Côté. The Museum wishes to live an experience of discovery, emotion and reflection to visitors. The role of a museum is to allow the meeting. This is why the Musée de la civilization is quickly engaged in the project of the Commissioner, Mr. Alain Lebas, "he concluded.

The visitor's journey
The course has been designed taking into account the fact that it is a first encounter with the art of Nigeria for a large number of visitors. No course is required or predetermined, the visitor is free to move toward the objects attracting more attention or curiosity spice.

The space is arranged and divided into islands aligning sets of objects representing large areas of Nigeria: Cross River, Niger Delta, Upper, Lower and Middle Benue region and the border with Cameroon. Other sets of objects are grouped by ethnic groups such as the Igbo and Yoruba * including *. Each of these islands is clearly identified by the name of the ethnic group or region as well as a text with their main characteristics. Other groupings are presented, not by ethnicity but by type of representative objects such as masks and large murals, or similarity, kinship influence in style between the various ethnic groups in different regions.

Upon arrival, the visitor sees a crest Bokyi dance, a work both surprising and somewhat unsettling was chosen specifically for the challenge, surprise and arouse interest in the exhibition. In the room, the visitor finds himself in a staging purified with an overview of all the objects presented. Many of these can be seen on all sides allowing to appreciate the details and aesthetic qualities.

Descriptive texts supplement the presentation of these groups where certain objects considered major or exceptional, are highlighted differently to attract the visitor's eye and diversify the presentation. Among these are: a mask round Eket, a statue - drum ornament Mbembe - a monumental statue of Igbo 185 cm, a jumper on the Lower Benue, a couple in their Ibeji coat, a crest Ejagham four braids a mask Igbo-Izzi ...

Throughout the journey, the visitor has the opportunity to sit in different places to take the time to admire some things, listen to the story of the three French collectors passion for the art of Nigeria (Yves Develon, Max Itzikovitz and Alain Lebas) and watch videos ethnographic Nigerian dances and rituals (years 60 and 70) in which one can see some of the objects presented in the room.

Arts of Nigeria: the catalog
A catalog of the same name, a textual and visual quality, accompanies the exhibition. Co-published by the Museum of Civilization in Quebec and 5 Continents Editions, the lyrics were written by the curator, Alain Lebas, the chief curator and head of the Africa Heritage Unit Musée du Quai Branly, Hélène Joubert; the distinguished professor and historian Toyin Falola, University of Texas at Austin, and the lawyer Espenel Alexander, who signed Interviews with collectors. The beautiful photographs of the pieces presented are mostly the work of photographer Hughes Dubois.

Unavoidable, exposure in Nigeria Arts French private collections is presented at the Museum of Civilization on 24 October 2012 to 21 April 2013. An exhibition designed and produced in close collaboration with Alain Lebas, curator and collector specializing in the art of Nigeria. Alcoa is a partner in all of the programming of the Museum of Civilization.

* The Musée de la civilization uses the invariable form of respect for the ethnic vernacular.

SOURCE Museum of Civilization

Caption: "Crest Ejagham * four braids. Bois, antelope skin, metal, vegetable fibers. H. 95 cm. Private Collection. (CNW Group / Museum of Civilization)". URL of the image:


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