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3 Reasons Why ‘East meets West’ is a Powerful Exhibition

Curator, Obafemi Ogunleye during an exhibition of batik textiles by Tunde Odunlade.

Curator, Obafemi Ogunleye at an exhibition of batik textiles by Tunde Odunlade.

Obafemi Ogunleye has been selected as Palo Alto College’s, Spring 2016 Visiting Curator to further the promotion of African arts & culture in San Antonio. The partnership between Palo Alto College and the Olaju Art Group, a non-profit founded by Obafemi, offers students and residents the opportunity to experience a major international exhibition.

‘East meets West: An Exploration of African Cultures’ serves as the grand finale for a series of African art exhibitions in association with Contemporary Art Month (CAM). This event has generated much anticipation after being named one of the top 5 “not to miss” exhibitions by the SA Current.

Here, Obafemi describes the exhibition;

East meets West is an exhibition of contemporary African art which reminds us that Africa is a continent full of diversity and should be appreciated as such. We explore Kenya and Nigeria through works of art by both established and emerging artists acting as cultural ambassadors. Our themes of community and cultural empowerment encourage viewers to receive cultural knowledge and apply it to their individual realities

‘East meets West’ is a powerful exhibition for the following three reasons;

  1. Inspirational Artists
  2. Authentic Cultural Knowledge
  3. The Work is Dope!
Photograph by Kenyan based, Khadija Farah who captures images from Ifo II, Refugee Camp.

Photograph by Kenyan based, Khadija Farah who captures images from Ifo II, Refugee Camp.

Inspirational Artists

Each featured artist in this exhibition contributes an individual energy that gives testimony to the good of humanity. Messages of universal peace, empowerment, self-discovery and compassion can be found while interpreting works on display. The strategy of pairing an established artist with an emerging artist, allows viewers new to African art the ability to see different perspectives and approaches to the genre. The ideas explored by our featured artists open the door to necessary conversations concerning issues of race and globalization.

Authentic Cultural Knowledge

Any viewer of this exhibition will be exposed to interesting elements regarding African culture, and we guarantee it. Our purpose is to raise the level of understanding and appreciation for all African countries by comparing and contrasting Kenya & Nigeria. In order to achieve this, we present ideas and stories relevant to each respective country. Information shared during the opening reception promises to engage the audience with cultural knowledge in a fun, interactive manner.

The Work is Dope

#3 speaks for itself! We are honored to feature works of art by leading, creative individuals with a focus on Africa. Being able to share contemporary African art serves as a crucial link to cultural understanding for all races. By dedicating an entire month of showing for this exhibition, viewers will be able to revisit and better engage with exclusive works coming from amazing countries.

In conclusion, the Olaju Art Group is proud to present ‘East meets West’ and we encourage all viewers to approach the exhibition with an eye towards multi-cultural appreciation. As visiting curator, Obafemi will be working closely with Palo Alto College in developing educational programs centered on African culture for students and the extended community. Stay tuned as we continue to release more information leading up to the opening reception on Thursday, March 31st.

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