Graffiti Lagos becomes canvas for urban art

Graffiti is steadily on the rise in Lagos as more and more young people express themselves on walls and bridges.

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Unknown graffiti piece in Lagos play

Unknown graffiti piece in Lagos

(Konbini )
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Graffiti, the urban art form within the Hip-Hop culture context started in New York in the 1970s.

As the inner city crumbled from 'benign neglect' by the Nixon regime, youths took spray cans to express their creativity and frustration on city walls and subway trains.

The graffiti art form has survived over the decades and has spread around the world as Hip-Hop culture invaded other parts of the world from Asia to Africa.

A graffiti mural of Notorious B.I.G in New York City play

A graffiti mural of Notorious B.I.G in New York City

(5 Pointz )

 

In Lagos, the most populous city in Africa, graffiti is beginning to spring to life within the last few years. On bridges and walls, talented visual artists inspired by Hip-Hop culture are expressing themselves on the canvas of the concrete jungle.

A graffiti piece underneath the Lekki pedestrian bridge at Lekki Phase 1 play

A graffiti piece underneath the Lekki pedestrian bridge at Lekki Phase 1

(Pulse )

 

While graffiti is associated with ghettos and run-down neighbourhoods in Lagos it is more widespread. The pedestrian bridge after the 1st roundabout in Lekki, a swanky part of town, is a landmark for graffiti in Lagos.

The bridge has been painted or rather bombed by two main artists. Once you get on the bridge you know who the bridge belongs to, Fada Naija and Uprizn. Not shy about their art, they have bombed the bridge with their names boldly written.  There are several pieces sprayed by them and they have decorated an otherwise bland bridge.

ALSO READ: Graffiti artist says he is inspired by Banksy

In Ikoyi, a high upscale part of Lagos, 'HRM' graffitis could be found on Bourdillon Road (an area reserved for the wealthy families in Lagos), in 2013. HRM is the name of a sneaker line created by Hauwa Mukan. The Basquiat-like crown graffiti with the HRM initials was used to promote her sneaker line.

The HRM graffiti on Bourdillon in 2013 play

The HRM graffiti on Bourdillon in 2013

(Instagram/hauwahrm)

 

In Ikeja, the capital of the city, you can find a very colourful graffiti piece right in front of Ogundana Street off Allen Avenue. The piece was done to advertise the annual 'Big Bang' street carnival organise by the youths who live on Ogundana.

Big Bang graffiti piece at Ogundana street off Allen Avenue, Ikeja play

Big Bang graffiti piece at Ogundana street off Allen Avenue, Ikeja

(Instagram/aot2)

 

Graffiti in Lagos is more aesthetic than political. It is a common feature for graffitis to express political opinions. In Lagos, it is pure art and mainly for promotional uses.

Graffiti artist with his Bob Marley mural in Lagos play

Graffiti artist with his Bob Marley mural in Lagos

(Instagram/osa_seven)

 

Maybe this is the first stage of graffiti in Lagos or maybe this is the feature of the art from in the city. For now, it is a growing art and all we can do is enjoy the pieces of art.

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