ALAKE
2023

Spray paint, Fabric Dye, Acrylic Paint on Paper, Jute sacks, Rubber Inner Tubes, PPR pipe

98.4 x 98.4 in

Alake means "One to be honoured" in Yoruba. Yoruba is spoken throughout southwestern Nigeria and also by substantial numbers in Benin and Togo.

Being partly Ewe and Ga (both Ghanaian tribes), I am inspired by the naming traditions behind these tribes. In Africa, most children are named based on situations surrounding their birth. I decided to apply this technique to the naming of my works, naming them based on circumstances surrounding their creation: be it a moment of joy, gratitude or deep contemplation. I began using Yoruba names in my works as the Ga tribe have Yoruba roots in Nigeria and also because Yoruba names are similar to Ewe names. I began exploring the use of Igbo names after, as they bore similarities to Yorubo and Ewe names in terms of depth and meaning.

“Photo: Adam Reich, Courtesy of Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York”.

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