Nolstagia in Morayinko’s Debut Solo Exhibition at Mydrim Gallery

Yinka Olatunbosun

The tick-tocking pendulum clock, the sight of an old volkswagen beetle car and the alphabet slate will likely trigger memories of the past three and four decades before digital disruption. It is against this backdrop that Oluwafemi Morakinyo sets off a cross-generational show that revives nolstagia. From May 1, the week-long show at the Mydrim Gallery will chronicle the artist’s childhood and those of his viewers. The exhibition is the artist’s first solo show after over a decade of painting and participating in group exhibitions. Morakinyo is a senior art director at a leading advertising company but studied painting at Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH) where he graduated in 2010.

Titled, “Stamps of Memory,’’ the exhibition is a revival of experiences, a story that transcends generations. The artist owes much to his background for inspiration. 

“It is just like archiving experiences and memories. Growing up, my dad was a banker who used to collect stamps,’’ he recounted. “I used to draw the stamps because I found them very interesting. I lived with my grandma as well. She was a collector of fabrics and vintage plates. So all these experiences initiated my idea towards. So many of these articles of history are still in their custody. The idea for this show is to revive the memory about some particular things or stories that we have from our past.’’

With 13 works, Morakinyo brings back memories of vinyl record player, sewing machine, old vehicles and architecture as well as fashion elements of the 80s and 90s.

“Although we now live in a fast-paced world, we cling to these memories as a stamp to a package, transporting ourselves every now and then to simpler times,’’ he said at a recent press preview of the works.

One of the works titled “Sunday Service’’ is a throwback on how the artist’s mother used to wait by the car every Sunday while the children got set for church. While the painting titled ‘Je le O Sinmi’ recounts a visual tale of many children’s first taste of formal education and how that process was seen as a rite of passage of sorts-giving respite to parents. Other works include ‘Daily Bread,’ ‘New Release,’ ‘Good Luck Charm’ ‘Contemplation’ and ‘The Pianist.’

Although the artist said he has embraced the convenience that technology brings, he still appreciates the memories the past years hold and how that period deepens his appreciation for new technology.

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