The Ben Enwonwu Foundation Presents ‘Point of View’

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The Ben Enwonwu Foundation in collaboration with the Society of Nigerian Artists and supported by Alliance Française/Mike Adenuga Centre Lagos, launched its monthly series of talks ‘Point of View’ on September 17, 2019.

Conceived as a collaborative platform, the series aims to bring together a diverse line-up of artists, curators, collectors, writers, thinkers and policymakers to foster partnership between public and private sectors in supporting the visual arts in Nigeria.

The first edition was themed ‘A Case for Artist’s Resale Rights in Nigeria’. After the welcome remarks by Maurice Chapot, the Cultural Project Manager and Cultural Co-ordinator, Alliance Française Lagos/Mike Adenuga Centre, it opened with a 5-minute documentary. It focused on Ben Enwonwu and the work of the Foundation since inception in sustaining the artist’s legacy, through lectures, exhibitions and a scholarship scheme. Following, was an enlightening presentation on ‘The Significance of Resale Rights for Nigerian Artists’ delivered by Oliver Enwonwu, the Executive Director of the Foundation, which centred on the implementation of resale royalty rights for Nigerian visual artists as recognised by the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (Article 14ter). Bonhams Nigeria representative Neil Coventry continued the evening with an insightful presentation on the ‘Global Market for Nigeria Art’, touching succinctly on the rising monetary value of modern art from Nigeria on the international market, as well as drawing attention to the rising number of forgeries of modernist works that threatens to destroy the art market.

The highlight of the event was the panel discussion ‘Legislation and Implementing Artist’s Resale Rights in Nigeria’. The panel comprised of; John Asein the Director-General, Nigerian Copyright Commission; Ngozi Aderibigbe Sector Head, Technology, Media & Entertainment, Jackson, Etti & Edu; and Ajene Isebge, who represented the Acting Director-General, National Gallery of Art, Nigeria, Dr Simon Ikpakronyi. Lawyer and art consultant Seun Alli moderated the panel.

Significantly, stakeholders including the Society of Nigerian Artists and the Nigerian Copyright Commission scheduled a meeting to draw up an action plan for implementing artist’s resale right legislation in Nigeria. The panel concluded with a summation by multi-disciplinary artist Sadiq Williams.

Amongst invited guests were; Bruce Onobrakpeya MFR; Giles Peppiatt, Director, Modern & Contemporary African Art, Bonhams; Polly Alakija, Chairman, Lagos State Council of Arts and Culture; Kunle Oshun, Artistic Director, Lagos Biennial; and Sinmidele Adesanya, Director, Mydrim Gallery; and Prof Ebun Clark. Others were Prof. Frank Ugiomoh, Kolade Oshinowo, Olu Amoda, Wura-Natasha Ogunji, Ndidi Dike, Olu Ajayi, Burns Effiom, and Gbolahan Ayoola.

Sponsors and partners who contributed to the great success of this first edition are Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics (LADOL), Leadway Assurance Company Limited, Zircon Marine Limited, Jackson Etti & Edu, The Sole Adventurer and Ono Bello.


Oliver Enwonwu is founder and Editor-in-Chief of Omenka magazine, Director, Omenka Gallery and Chief Executive, Revilo. He holds a first degree in Biochemistry, advanced diploma in Exploration Geophysics (distinction), Post Graduate Diplomas in Applied Geophysics and Visual Art (distinction) and a Masters in Art History, all from the University of Lagos. He is the founder, Executive Director, and trustee of The Ben Enwonwu Foundation. He also sits on the board of several organizations including the National Gallery of Art, Nigeria and the Reproduction Rights Society of Nigeria. Enwonwu is also president of both the Society of Nigerian Artists and the Alliance of Nigerian Art Galleries.

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