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Nigeria in Venice Biennial Meet the 3 Nigerian artists set to make history at the art exhibition

Venice Biennial will be hosting Nigeria in it's 57th edition. The Nigeria pavillion will be featuring Victor Ehikhamenor and Peju Alatise and Qudus Onikeku. Let's meet them.

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qudus onikeku performing at a festival play

qudus onikeku performing at a festival

(Christopher Raynaud)

The Venice Biennale, the most prestigious contemporary visual art exhibition in the world, in it's 57th edition will be hosting a Nigeria pavilion, for the first time ever.

The exhibition which will open to the public from  May 13 to November 26 includes 87 national participations in the historic Pavillions at the Giardini and in the historic city centre of Venice.

The Nigerian Pavilion will feature installations and performance, developed by two visual artists, Victor Ehikhamenor and Peju Alatise, and one performance artist, Qudus Onikeku.

Let's meet the artists.

ALSO READ: Highlights from the "Nigeria in Venice" press conference

1. Victor Ehikhamenor


Born in Udomi-Uwessan, Edo State, Nigeria. Award winning visual artist, writer and photographer, Victor Ehikhamenor draws influence from traditional African motifs and cosmology.


Ehikhamenor will present, The Biography of the Forgotten, a large-scale work fusing abstract shapes with traditional sculpture, informed by an investment in classical Benin art and the effect of colonialism on cultural heritage.

2. Peju Alatise

Peju Alatise play

Peju Alatise


Mixed-medium artist, skilled poet and a writer with a degree in architecture Peju Alatise has practised as a studio artist for over thirteen years and has addressed several social, political and gender issues as the subject matter. Her works have also captured the joys and pains of womanhood as experienced in modern-life-African traditions with their consequences.

Peju-Alatise-Flying-Girls-2017_Photo-Courtesy-Peju-Alatise play




Alatise, on her part, will present Flying Girls, an installation of eight winged life-size girls, based on the story of a 10-year old girl, who works as a housemaid in Lagos while dreaming of a realm where she is free and can fly.

3. Qudus Onikeku

Qudus Onikeku play

Qudus Onikeku


Performing artist, Qudus Onikeku creates movement identity that fuses dance and acrobatics. He makes the Yoruba traditional culture his basis, combining it with several other influences such as the guiding philosophies of hip hop, capoeira, and contemporary dance, to weave a certain understanding of the human condition.

  • qudus onikeku performing at a festival play

    qudus onikeku performing at a festival

    (Christopher Raynaud)


Onikeku will showcase Right Here, Right Now a trilogy of performance films presented as an investigation through dance of the workings of body memory and its connection to national consciousness.

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