Which novels best represent contemporary Nigeria?

Selected projects 2020


The Goethe-Institut Nigeria is pleased to announce the 12 projects that will receive financial support after the public call for proposals to support Nigeria's local cultural scene.

Overall, a large number of high-quality applications were sent in, and unfortunately not all of them could be considered. The topics of the selected projects are diverse and range from theater to music, art journalism and even gaming and the support of the local comics scene.

The Goethe-Institut intends to continue the call for proposals to support the local cultural scene every year and wishes all future applicants every success.

About the selected projects

© Ise Owo Omo-GbolahanArt Mobile Lagos is a meeting place for street performances, rituals, discussions, conversations and discoveries by international literary activists and artists.
The aim is to meet at workshops, film screenings, exhibitions and symposia, to get involved, to discuss and to work together, to form networks, to teach, to inspire, to share, to interact, to create and to exchange.

The idea was developed from the Nigerian Odun Doctrine, which explains how life energies are transmitted in a common gathering depending on the time and season. In this gathering we will have a conversation about inner intuitions in relation to outer structures in order to find the meaning of existence.

We strive to initiate artistic encounters in various public spaces in the city of Lagos. It is a non-profit meeting on the topic of contemporary art with the main motivation to start a dialogue between academics, intellectuals, artists, other cultural workers and the public in order to reflect on social and political issues.

As a cultural hub, we intend to position African contemporary art in its highly international arena through the above activities.

The activities that we carry out in the context of residencies, studies, public events and publications with different approaches will enable an exciting addition to artistic creation and critical discourse. It is our intention that all these actions lead to a new public interest, reawaken 'mobile' and public art, form and cultivate a new local and international audience and have a positive effect on the community. The dynamism and complexity of the event makes it flexible and mobile as it will take place in different public spaces, galleries, markets and exhibition halls in Lagos.

Subject: SOJI The title of our event was adapted from the Nigerian slang wake-up, as it is used by the daily commuters on the streets of Lagos. The cosmopolitan megacity with its energetic mood evokes provocative words that inspire its residents to survive the daily hustle and bustle.

We decided to meditate on this surrounding contemporary history in order to raise awareness of African communities. During the event we will consciously go back to the past and move from there into the present in the context of post-colonialism and the importance of contemporary African art in African communities.

Africa is faced with the spirit of colonial strength. The social environment of the continent is greatly inflated by the guise of the policy of assimilation. Those countries that were colonies are culturally infiltrated to this day with colonial mentality, language, food, style of clothing, music, religion, etc. A virtual proof of the colonial legacy. History, culture and traditional experiences determine our political and social environment. However, contemporary African art has integrated and consolidated itself over time through the relationship between historical and current perspectives. This relationship leads us into the future.

About us: Illuminate Theater is a Lagos-based, non-profit, multidisciplinary creative laboratory that creates limitless experimental artistic projects. Our collective mainly focuses on empowering, uniting and engaging society through development projects. For five years we have been curating, creating and participating in cultural and artistic projects that stimulate thought and in which young people at home and abroad take part in performances and cultural exchanges. We have agreed to work together as a team to create a space where community development art projects can be shared, taught, implemented and created. Based on our basic knowledge of traditional African methods of audience involvement, we are committed to inventing, creating, developing and establishing a new form of performance approach.
© Enter Africa In contrast to its counterparts in the creative industry, Nigeria's gaming industry has received minimal attention - although it has great potential. There is little information about the industry as well as its potential and the ways to use it. Nigeria's Gaming Industry: Opportunities, Challenges and Practices is a project that seeks to research the local gaming industry by holding talks with creatives from Nigeria's gaming and immersive media clusters and startups.

Interviews, round tables, exhibitions, on-site visits, etc. are intended to enable discussions about what is happening within the industry and to use the knowledge gained in the process to arouse interest in the local gaming industry and highlight its complexity. In addition to discussions with industry stakeholders, the project also offers open gaming events and workshops that are intended to educate the public about the various aspects of gaming and to facilitate contacts with the local gaming industry.
Enter Africa is a creative network that is represented in 15 African countries. The network has an interdisciplinary team of creatives who are not only passionate about growing the African gaming industry, but also trying to create a gaming ecosystem that represents African culture and redesigns the future of Africa.
© Ajibola Fashola / PAWSTUDIOS Abuja Fringe FestivalScheduled this year between December 3rd and 6th, 2020, is an annual multidisciplinary arts festival with a range of music, theater and film events, exhibitions, talent shows, award ceremonies, children's events, cabaret, panel discussions and educational opportunities. It is aimed at different age and interest groups with a wide range of different cultural offerings. The festival attracts people from other states to Abuja and extensively promotes the events on traditional, online and social media. We want to promote the strong commitment of the diverse Nigerian youth during the festival through training, exhibitions and networking events.

The Abuja Fringe Festival will also invest in developing talent in the local area for eight weeks with a skills lab. It participates in a valuable process to promote artistic life in Abuja and northern Nigeria while promoting access for international cooperation. The learning and development program, shared creative activities and interactions will bring local communities together, make people feel empowered and proud of their local environment, and give them the opportunity to celebrate and appreciate local diversity .

Abuja is a dynamic and fast growing city in the entertainment and business sectors. It is also one of the most culturally diverse cities in the country and one of only two where over 50% of the population speaks a language other than their mother tongue at home. Income is also growing rapidly, and Abuja is attracting more workers than those who leave the area. These statistics show that Abuja is a growing area both as a community and an entertainment hub.
© Ajibola Fashola / PAWSTUDIOS Lagos Fringe Festival supports artists in realizing a creative mix of theater, poetry, film, spoken poetry, magic, cabaret, exhibitions, literature, dance and music etc. at no additional cost to them. It is a multidisciplinary open access arts festival that will take place from November 17-22, 2020.
Lagos Fringe makes it possible to massively expand and strengthen the festival so that it can offer over 150 performances in different locations in this city that never sleeps. It is our goal to build on the successes of the previous festivals by presenting a larger program and expanding to other locations in the Lagos area, further realizing the goals of the Fringe Festival.

The main events will be produced and performed in Freedom Park, Lagos Island, but more than 100 other exhibitions of music, art, dance, photography and collaborative creations independently produced will be held on the mainland and Lagos Island.

Lagos Fringe Festival 2020 will also have some festival programs that focus on learning through a series of conversations, workshops and networking events, all with the festival theme "Inspired by the future"and are accessible to both the participants and the general public.
© The Entrepreneurship Initiative of African Youth (EIFAY) Das Artisan Festival (#ArtisanFest 2020) is an art and cultural event of the Entrepreneurship Initiative for African Youth (EIFAY), which was founded to promote art, cultural and creative enrichment and the creative industries.
This event aims to further strengthen the importance of artisan communities for artistic and cultural enrichment and for the sustainable economic development of society.
The three-day Artisan Festival Events 2020, which will be held in Enugu at the National Museum of Unity (NewBerries Park), plans to feature creative art exhibitions, visual and artistic performances by various artisan groups and communities from southeastern Nigeria, with the primary aim of Promote Nigeria's cultural heritage and economic development.
The aims of the project are:
  1. Developing mechanisms to strengthen handicrafts, productivity and cultural enterprise opportunities for Nigerian artisans through exhibitions of handicrafts and creative works.
  2. Establishing strategic arts and crafts markets for the artisans and promoting patronage for Nigerian-made art, design, textiles and exhibitions of creative work.
  3. Recognition of local productions of handicrafts and creative works by identifying and rewarding outstanding achievements, creativity and impact of the artisans in the cultural and creative industries.

More than 10,000 guests and participants are expected for this first edition of the Artisan Festival 2020.

© Irie Vibes FestThe Irie Vibes Fest is a music, arts, and health education event that offers free cervical cancer screening and nationwide education.

In addition to creating a fun event with a selection of the best reggae music, it is above all a way to encourage the public to engage with a certain type of conscious music.

However, the number one reason for Irie Vibes is to provide adequate information about the risks and prevention of cervical cancer through on-site screenings.

The prevention of this disease consists in an annual preventive examination of the cervix; this takes less than 3 minutes and is painless.
Attending Irie Vibes once a year is the perfect and safe way to ensure women from all walks of life have access to free on-site checkups. This is our strategy to end cervical cancer deaths.
© MOCAUnveiling the World, Transforming Reality: Practicing Intersubjectivity through Art and Design is a full-day symposium to which contemporary artists, writers, academics and the wider public are invited to explore interpretations and causes of our current socio-political reality and our social discontent.
The symposium, which will take place on October 3, will include an exhibition, film screening and panel discussions with innovative content and a focused, enlightening vision. By providing a platform for this ultra-modern and appealing program design, we hope to capture an African zeitgeist and convey a feeling for the shared historical reality and thus arouse a sense of togetherness in the participants. In addition, it is our goal that the participants critically examine our commitment to realities and expand their ideas of the possibilities of social transformation by building a unified, critically committed and progress-oriented community.
'Unveiling the World, Transforming Reality' pursues the wider vision of the Museum of Contemporary Art Lagos: We want to involve Nigerians in a robust contemporary art culture by presenting independent and imaginative visions that will ultimately lead our society into uncharted territory . As part of our Step Off the Map initiative, we will introduce local artists with invaluable professional connections, as well as concepts and art forms that can be explored in their own work. Previous panelists on the 'Step off the Map' initiative include Jumoke Sanwo from Revolving Art Incubator, Belgian artists Barbara Rottiers and Annick de Rop, photographer Uche James Iroha and many other creatives who have made a difference in their communities.
© LUDI The LUDI library of African culture, architecture and urbanism is an initiative that responds to the lack of centralized sources of information about the particular pace, style and trend of design and urbanization on the African continent.

Most of the literature on the subject is already widely discussed, but it lacks the continuity and cohesion necessary for a researcher to fully understand the subject. For example, the library will collect and catalog books, magazine articles, films, architectural and urban planning records, which may include floor plans and sections of remarkable or listed buildings as well as urban master plans.
The main objective of the library would be to promote knowledge of African culture, architecture and urbanism as it has evolved over the centuries of recorded history.
This knowledge is then to be made accessible to students, researchers and specialists, not only in Lagos, but all over the world. It is intended as an international reference point for curated content on the diversity of African culture, architecture and urbanism.

The main contributors to this project are the Lagos Urban Development Initiative, Goethe-Institut Nigeria, Sahara Center and RYG Designs. The library will be located at 31 Brickfield Road in Costain, Surulere, Lagos. It will have marked shelves with alphabetical and chronological sorting / referencing. In addition, it will offer reading space for a maximum of eight people at a time.
© The Sahara CentreCulture is also about evolution and making sure that progress is made to move society forward. Conversations @ INDIGO is a free monthly series of talks that began in mid-2019 to enable open discussions on various cultural topics with which the Nigerian audience can identify and which can help educate the participants.
Conversations @ INDIGO are organized in the form of a salon in which big questions about different areas of life in Lagos and Nigeria are discussed in order to create an open space for meaningful and stimulating engagement.This space is essential to foster curiosity, open-mindedness, and show people how to have meaningful conversations, ask in-depth questions, and share answers that can help understand the reality of life in Lagos and Nigeria.
The editions of 'Conversations @ INDIGO' focus on sociocultural elements in Nigeria and on highlighting topics that have not been given the space and focus they deserve.

The goal of Conversations @ INDIGO is to develop systems in which people - their opinions, feelings, ideas and contributions, both material and immaterial - stay at the heart of the country's cultural development, and ultimately the sociocultural elements of Nigerian To promote society.
© Punocracy Political apathy is growing at an alarming rate in Nigeria. Many people simply do not care about how they are governed for various reasons and pay little attention to the latest political developments. "Punocracy" was created to combat this problem and to draw attention to various other social evils through creative writing - especially through satire.

The Price for satire is an annual writing competition. For the first edition, which took place in 2019, a total of 171 entries were submitted, addressing a range of topics including political corruption, gender-based violence, religious hypocrisy, decay of education, internet fraud, insufficient transparency and accountability in governance and so on.

Judges included James Yékú, a PhD in English and Assistant Professor at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, USA, and Oladeinde Olawoyin, an award-winning investigative journalist for Premium Times and author of the weekly Saturday Satire column.

At the award ceremony, which took place on the same day, November 9 was named World Satire Day and is celebrated with the winners shortly before this day every year. The ceremony was attended by Tijani Oluwamayowa, an award-winning AFP journalist and development editor for The Cable newspaper, Yinka Egbokhare, author of Dazzling Mirage, and Mr. Oladeinde.

The group will organize the second edition of the writing contest and World Satire Day event in 2020, with significant improvements in reach and effectiveness, among which a prize for satirical visual arts should be highlighted. The aims of the project include: To make satire a widely valued tool for sociopolitical commentary; to raise political awareness and participation while fighting apathy among Nigerians; Celebrate the works, lives and legacies of great satirists and promote free speech and creative writing that are both politically conscious and socially responsible.
© Sunday AlayindeDie Oluosupa Arts and Culture Education Academy (OACTA) is a non-profit art and culture initiative. We have a double vision: empowering young Nigerians through life-changing projects that teach them useful skills; to be a symbol of the celebration and appreciation of local arts, culture and heritage in Nigeria and around the world.

Nigeria is endowed with a growing population of young adults who have immense talent and energy but lack the skills and knowledge to make the transition into working life. At OACTA we offer a platform for the acquisition of these skills through our various art and culture-oriented workshops and training projects and support art networks and communities.

The OACTA workshops will take place this year from mid to late October 2020 in the historic town of Ile-Ife in the state of Osun. We are excited to bring together artists of all kinds in this city with a great cultural heritage.

In a dynamic series of participatory workshops aimed at practical training, young people are taught the skills and knowledge of local textile production through traditional and contemporary designs. The aim is to impart entrepreneurial skills to the participants and enable them to appreciate the indigenous and contemporary forms of textile art that are accessible to them.

The project gives the participants a practical insight into the production processes of monochrome / multicolored designed batik products and ends with the production of artistic and cultural textiles and everyday objects - bags, clothes and comfortable household items.

In addition, the participants will have the unique opportunity to work closely with visual and textile artists to gain an in-depth look at the historical, mythological and philosophical narratives of African textile traditions using a visual and conceptual framework.
The project will culminate with an exhibition showcasing the participants' work and a discussion forum designed to enable debate and exploration of ideas and concepts.
© Dada Adekoya / CARTANDie Cartoonists Association of Nigeria, CARTAN, an umbrella organization of Nigerian political cartoonists, comic artists, animators, illustrators and similar professional groups who work in Nigeria and the diaspora, started an online campaign on this topic: "Drawing the Line for Free Speech in Nigeria"on January 20, 2020.

This online campaign (https://cartan.org/free-speech-campaign/) is a creative reaction and contribution of the association to the ongoing national discourse and commitment
different professional groups for the "Hate Speech Legislation" which has gone through the second reading in the highest legislative institution of the country. The highlight of the campaign will be a round table on "Free Speech" planned for October 2020.

The November 2019 bill banning hate speech tabled by the Nigerian Senate may restrict the freedoms of cartoonists and their allied practitioners of visual political commentary. The proposed punishment can range from life imprisonment to death by hanging.
Like other professional groups and civil society organizations, we believe that this bill is exaggerated, over-generalized and violates Section 39 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which guarantees freedom of expression and information. In the clear words of the CARTAN President:

"Truth is like an artist's imagination; it knows no bounds. Nobody should be punished for expressing it. Around us there are many realities that we are conditioned to ignore, and our campaign is designed to attract attention draw on them "