he Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria-based renowned art educator, painter, and scholar, Professor Jerry Buhari, has been announced as the head of a six-man panel of jurors for the Life in My City Art Festival (LIMCAF) 2022.
This announcement was made by the LIMCAF art director, Dr. Ayo Adewunmi, after a recently held meeting of the Board of Trustees and the Organising Committee. According to Dr Adewunmi, this year’s panel was made up of two senior female and four male artists, in addition to two past LIMCAF Overall Prize winners.
The jury’s other members are Yaba College of Technology, Lagos-based multidisciplinary artist and academic, Dr Odun Orimolade; the Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State-based fine art photographer, painter, printmaker and lecturer Dr Timipre Willis Amah; the Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, US-based art historian Dr Okechukwu Nwafor; Abuja-based graphic artist and photographer Ms Mariagoretti Eze; and a leading Nigerian hyperrealistic artist, Olumide Oresegun.
LIMCAF, a youth-focused annual celebration of creativity in visual art which began in 2007, is currently the biggest and longest running art event in Nigeria. At its core is the visual art competition but the festival’s grand finale week features various events including the Grand Finale Exhibition of the Best 100 Artworks of the Year, as well as the annual art lecture, the school children’s and art teachers’ workshops and side exhibitions in various venues in Enugu. It comes to a climax with the Gala and Award Night when the results of the art competition are announced and the young artists win various prizes.
In the run up to these final events of the festival, regional exhibitions, adjudication and selection had been held from July to September in eight regional centres across the country including Abuja, Port Harcourt, Uyo, Lagos, Ibadan, Ondo, Auchi and Enugu from where the 100 best artworks to feature in the Grand Finale Exhibition were selected.
Dr Adewunmi explained that there used to be between nine and 11 Regional Centres before now but the Trustees believe that first, COVID-19 in the year 2020 and later the ASUU strike, account for the less than the usual number of between 400 and 500 entries every year. This forced the Organising Committee to collapse the entry and regional exhibition centres to eight for this year.
In spite of this, the Trustees are no less impressed with the quality and eclectic range of works comprising sculpture, terracotta, mixed media, paintings, charcoal drawings, photography, ceramics, textile and clay done by young, talented Nigerian artists over which the panel of jurors will preside.