KARL OHIRI: SWEET MOTHER
Sweet Mother marks British-Nigerian artist Karl Ohiri’s first solo show in Nigeria and is derivative of the popular 70s song Sweet Mother by Prince Nico Mbarga, and a popular accolade dedicated to celebrate motherhood in Nigeria. The exhibition runs from May 6 to 21 at Omenka Gallery, Lagos, and features a collection of photographs and videos of autobiographical works focusing on the artist’s mother, created over a 5-year period.
Using the camera as a tool to reconcile fears, fantasies and desires, Ohiri takes the audience on an intimate journey of love, loss and regret, presenting viewers a gaze into the relationship between a mother and son while reminding them of its universal relevance.
Sweet Mother is part of the British Council’s UK/Nigeria 2015–16 initiative, a major season of arts in Nigeria aimed at building new audiences, creating new collaborations and strengthening relationships.
Karl Ohiri’s practice is situated between two overlapping points of interest: cultural studies and the human condition and primarily explored through the use of photography, text, performance and installation while employing a conceptual approach to documentary, intervention, appropriation and re-contextualization. The result is a mixture of contemporary works that are based on social commentary and personal works that are often confessional and autobiographical in nature. His artworks have been exhibited in various venues within the UK including; The New Art Exchange, Heathrow Terminal 5 and Tate Britain. In addition to group and solo shows, he has participated in international art fairs and festivals such as; the FNB Joburg Art Fair, Viennafair, LagosPhoto Festival, Format Festival and the EM15 Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale.
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