September Residency Update

September Residency Update

September proved to be an exciting opening to a second year of residencies at G.A.S Foundation, Y.S.F.’s sister organisation located in Nigeria.

Activities kicked off with the arrival of Okiki Akinfe, a UK-based visual artist and Royal College of Art alum supported by G.A.S.’s Residency Patronage Programme. Time in Lagos enabled Okiki new opportunities to explore the Yoruba traditional corpus and strengthen her current creative practice of using world-building to subvert narratives surrounding Black existence. One of the many highlights of her trip was an exciting visit to G.A.S. Ecology Green Farm, Ijebu, alongside Chef Michael Elegbede of Ìtàn Test Kitchen. Together, they prepared a delicious meal using sustainably grown produce from the farm’s hydroponic greenhouses.


Okiki Akinfe (L) touring the Ecology Green Farm with Chef Selassie Atadika and Chef Michael Elegbede.


Okiki concluded her residency by hosting a well-attended Young Artist’s Open Critique targeted at art students and emerging practitioners. Guest moderators included visual artist, Chidinma Nnoli, and director of 1952 Africa, Tracian Meikle.  Since her time at G.A.S., Okiki’s work has been featured in Free The Wind, The Spirit, and The Sun, a recently concluded exhibition curated by Yinka Shonibare CBE for Stephen Friedman Gallery, London (2023).


Chidinma Nnoli (L), Okiki Akinfe (M), and Tracian Meikle (R) at the Young Artist’s Open Critique.


G.A.S.’s second resident of the season was Glasgow based artist and musician, Leo Robinson. Leo spent his first visit to Lagos immersed in the discovery of traditional African instruments, crafts culture, and religious ideation. Some notable stops from his trip include G.A.S. Farm House and Ecology Green Farm, Ijebu, and the Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove. The experience charted new avenues for his unique artistic practice, allowing him the chance to experiment with new materials.


Leo Robinson experimenting with new techniques at G.A.S. Lagos.


Before his departure, Leo was able to share insights from his month-long stay during an evening of cultural exchange, The Imaginary in the Diaspora. His trip was generously supported by G.A.S. Foundations’ Residency Partner, Tiwani Contemporary.


The Imaginary in the Diaspora: An Artist Talk by Leo Robinson.


G.A.S.’s final resident for the month was none other than ART X 2022 prize winner, Belinda Kazeem-Kaminski. As a writer, multidisciplinary artist, and PhD level scholar, Belinda spent much of her eight-week residency producing works for the 2023 edition of ART X Lagos, West Africa’s largest international art fair. She prepared 6 works under the mentorship of distinguished photographer Amaize Ojeikere, and internationally renowned performance artist and activist, Jelili Atiku.


Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński at her ART X Lagos stand.


Eager to engage with emerging practitioners on the continent, Belinda hosted an all-day writing workshop, Free Writing as a Tool, aimed at empowering local creatives with essential tools for navigating traditional application structures within the global art space.


Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński hosting a writing workshop at G.A.S. Lagos.


Since her recently concluded residency, Belinda has been awarded the 43rd Msgr. Otto Mauer Prize. Her residency was supported by G.A.S. Residency Partner, ART X Lagos.

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