About this project
WHAT'S OUR PROJECT?
The Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos through its new publishing initiative is producing an ambitious monograph on the Nigerian photographer J. D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere (1930-2014). The book will feature a selection of more than 200 photographs from the artist’s extensive archive. Exploring themes ranging from architectural studies, portraiture and fashion-related work as well as his internationally acclaimed Hairstyles and Headgear Series this new publication will feature a stunning collection of high-quality black-and-white photographs.
After nearly five years of research and planning, the book is currently in its final stages of editing. Your support is needed as we enter the design and printing stages of production. The book is scheduled to launch in October 2014 at the 1:54 African Art Fair in London (16-19 October 2014)
WHO IS J.D. ‘OKHAI OJEIKERE?
'Okhai Ojeikere (Edo State, Nigeria 1930-2014) began his photography career in 1950 after acquiring his first camera, a Kodak Model Brownie D. Over a period spanning six decades the artist had amassed an archive of over 10,000 images that bear witness to the critical role that photography has played in the history of Nigeria and throughout Africa.
Ojeikere’s work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions and has been featured in more than fifty group shows, among them Documenta XII (2007), the 55th Venice Bienniale (2013), Museum of Contemporary Art, Kiasma, Helsinki (2011) and the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos (2010). His work is featured in major museum collections such as the Museum of Modern Art (NYC), Metropolitan Museum of Art (NYC), the Brooklyn Museum (NYC), the Tate Modern (London), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), and the Musée du quai Branly (Paris).
WHY IS DOING THE PUBLICATION IMPORTANT?
Ojeikere’s groundbreaking career has dramatically influenced the trajectory of photography in Nigeria, Africa, and the world more broadly. Like other pioneering west African photographers such as Seydou Keïta (b. 1921-2001), James Barnor (b. 1929) and Malick Sidibe (b. 1936), the interest in Ojeikere’s work has dramatically increased in recent years.
The texts in the publication evaluate Ojeikere’s work in relation to histories of West African photography, architectural design, and hair culture, while also contextualising the artist’s practice vis-à-vis recent photography in Nigeria and Africa. The detailed interview is one of the last extended conversations with the artist, and provides illuminating insight into his career, working methods, and cultural investments.
CCA, Lagos is an independent art space that is funded on a project-by-project basis. We are a small team of committed staff and volunteers and have decided to pursue the project as a self-published initiative because of the lack of art publishing and distribution channels across the continent.
Your donation will go towards the cost of design, image and pre-printing production (necessary for the high quality printing) as well as the final printing and binding of the publication.
If we go above our campaign budget it will allow us to explore the best printing techniques available for black and white photography and/or towards wider distribution of the publication across the continent.
We are engaging with Kickstarter’s global audience in order to complete this monograph and to develop alternative avenues for publishing in and from Africa that aren’t dependent on the major international art publishers and distributors.
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WHAT IS THE TEAM'S EXPERIENCE?
We are working with an extremely experienced and committed team of writers, designers, editors and co-ordinators. Contributors to the project include: artists Jide Adeniyi-Jones and Don Barber, art historians Antawan I. Byrd, Erin Haney, Ikem Okoye, and curators Aura Seikkula and Bisi Silva. Our design team is led by the award winning photography-focused design agency Heijdens Karwei and the reputable book production agency, Colour and Books both based in the Netherlands.
Moreover, the long-term collaboration with Pa Ojeikere and his studio foto ojeikere led by the artist’s son and photographer, Amaize Ojeikere has provided invaluable advice, expertise, and access over the past five years. The combined experience and skills of this team will ensure the monograph’s successful outcome and highest quality.
WHAT IS THE CENTRE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART, LAGOS?
The Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos (CCA, Lagos) is an independent, non-profit, art institution founded in 2007. One of the leading art organizations in Africa, the centre was established to provide a platform for the development, presentation, and discussion of contemporary art and culture both locally and internationally. In addition to promoting media such as photography, animation, film and video, and performance art, CCA, Lagos also encourages and support the professionalization of art and exhibition making in Nigeria and West Africa, as well as the professional development of emerging curators, writers, and researchers.
Since its opening, the CCA, Lagos Library has amassed a significant collection of materials on contemporary art, critical theory, and curatorial practice-with more than 7000 books, magazines, journals, videos, and other ephemera, making it one of the most important specialised art libraries in the region. Our particular emphasis on materials published in Nigeria and across Africa has resulted in a unique and important collection of publications, many of which are only available locally.
For more on CCA, Lagos, our exhibitions and programming, visit www.ccalagos.org
Risks and challenges
Risks and Challenges
The main risks and challenges we foresee could be production delays however this is unlikely. We have a goal oriented team used to working with received time guidelines. In addition adequate margins have been included that will allow us to deliver on our fulfilment commitments.
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