Through photography, film, writing and conversations, Nigerian artists question the borders within and beyond which Nigerianness exists.

Between Feb 9th and March 9th, 2019, the Nigerian Railway Corporation Yard, Yaba Lagos will host Re-Imaging Futures: A Trans-Nigerian Conversation; an art exhibition that showcases works created during the “Borders Within” Trans-Nigerian road trip project of 2016 and 2017.

Re-Imaging Futures: A trans-Nigerian Conversation
Re-Imaging Futures: A trans-Nigerian Conversation. Lugard’s Rest House, Emeka Okereke, Lokoja 2016

Assembled by the Invisible Borders Trans-African Photographers Organisation, twelve Nigerian photographers, writers and filmmakers travelled in two groups for a total of 81 days with an ambitious goal: to decipher if ever it was possible to escape what one has been named, in this case, Nigeria, a mishmash of over 250 distinct ethnic groups.

Re-Imaging Futures: A trans-Nigerian Conversation. (c) Adura, Nengi Nelson, Ibadan 2017

Through the mediums of photography, prose and film, each artist created an exhaustive body of work on what it means to be Nigerian. Opening on Feb 9th, the resulting exhibition will also serve as the background for two public conversations held at the Museum of Contemporary Arts (MoCA), Lagos.

On Feb 12th, the panel On Re-Imaging Futures: Legacywill consider the beginnings of art collectives in Nigeria; the panellists are members of Depth of Field, a Nigerian photography collective funded in 2001. Working since a time when photography was scarcely accepted as an art in Nigeria, D.o.F is a crucial custodian of the history and trajectory of photography in Nigeria.

From the Series: Stereotype of Masculinity. Realised in the framework of Borders Within Trans-Nigerian Road Trip 2016. 6th Edition of Invisible Borders Trans-African Project. (c) School Boys, Zaynab Odunsi, Warri 2016

On Feb 13th, the panel Re-Imaging Futures: Future Images will interrogate art and Nigerianness today by way of discussions regarding contemporary issues seen through the experiences of artists and administrators active in the art world today with considerable international and local following.

Anchored by the public discussions, the exhibition hopes to achieve a fuller and rounder narrative while also educating and stimulating the audience on their understanding of and relationship with Nigeria.

About Invisible Borders

Invisible Borders Trans-African Photographers Organisation is an artist-led initiative founded by EmekaOkereke, based in Lagos. The exhibition and the public programs are organised by YinkaElujoba and Innocent Ekejiuba following an open call by Apexart, a New York-based non-profit arts organization.