15th LAGOS BOOK AND ART FESTIVAL (LABAF): THE NIGERIAN CENTENARY

LABAF2013_ LagosStory

What’s your Lagos Story?

The Lagos Book and Art Festival (LABAF) is an annual art and cultural festival with high book content, bringing together everybody from all works of life. It has been earmarked as the culture picnic, filled with fun, thrills and full cultural entertainment. The festival features theatre performances, readings, exhibitions, live music, workshops, book parties and sessions for the children which are handled by the Children and The Environment (CATE). With time, the festival has grown to be a world class cultural event and a high point in the nation’s cultural calendar.

Over the years, LABAF has attracted a great number of individuals and organisations or institutions such as: Nigerian Institute for Cultural Orientation, National Gallery of Arts, National Theatre, National Museum, Centre for Black Arts and African Studies, and President Goodluck Jonathan’s ‘’Bring Back The Book’’ team. Also, LABAF derives support from cultural and corporate organisations such as Zenith Bank, Coca cola, Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas (NLNG), DV Works, French Cultural Centre, Goethe Institut, Terra Culture, Jason Vision, Steve Rhodes Orchestra and Crown Troupe of Africa. This year’s event is in partnership with the British Council and the Hay Festival.

The theme for this year is: THE NIGERIAN CENTENARY- THE LAGOS STORY which comes up from November 15th-17th at Freedom Park (Old colonial prison site), Broad Street, Lagos Island; 10.00am to 7.00pm each day. It will feature special guests such as Nasir El Rufai, Professor Akin Adesokan and Julius Agwu. The event will also be in memory of the literary icon ‘Chinua Achebe’.

 

LABAF is put together by Committee for Relevant Art (CORA) whose mission is to create an enabling environment for the flourishing of the contemporary arts of Nigeria and to increase human capacity of the continent. CORA is a recipient of Prince Claus Award received in 2006, as an honour to the ‘energetic activities’ and in order to pay attention to the ‘contribution of dedicated civilians to stimulate the arts. CORA is the co-organizer behind several events like the quarterly Art Stampede, open air Cinema Carnival and Lagos Comics Carnival. Furthermore, it is the publisher of the quarterly magazine Lagos The City Arts Guide, it publishes books and founded several libraries. It also serves as a platform of various forums, like the Arthouse Forum.

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For more information:

www.coraartfoundation.com

cora@coraartfoundation.com

info@coraartfoundation.com

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Artmosphere: The Open Mic with the Bards

Artmosphere.Oct

Artmosphere, a leading literary, arts and performance parley curated by WriteHouse Collective has consistently provided the needed ambiance for literary, creative and intellectual empowerment in Nigeria.

WriteHouse Collective, the parent social enterprise for the idea, Artmosphere is pleased to announce its October edition. This edition is a special open mic edition which intends to discover new voices, and talents. It will headlined by two NNLG mentions, Iquo Eke, author of Symphony of Beginning and Chijioke Umu-Nnadi, author of Through the Window of the Sandcastle.

Iquo Eke is a prolific performance poet and the youngest Nigerian long-listed for the NNLG prize. Symphony of Beginning is her debut book, and it can gained critical acclaim as charming and insightful.

Chio Amu Nnadi is the author of Through the Window of a Sandcastle. He has twice been recognized as one of Nigeria’s prolific poets. Described as Nigeria’s Dennis Brutus, Umu Nnadi’s poems are profound.

This edition intends to delve into a serious discourse on the future of the Arts in Nigeria. With intellectuals and young minds expressing their expectations of the arts, we hope that we can discover answers to baffling questions that has relegated the arts to the background of social, political and economic importance.

The mic is open to both young and old minds in this edition.

The November edition of Artmosphere, A Special Open Mic Edition will hold on Saturday, November 19, 2013

Venue: NuStreams Conference Centre, KM 110 Abeokuta road, Alalubosa GRA Extension, Ibadan.

Time: 2pm.

Tainsville’s Spotlights: Interview with Blackdistrikt’s Founder, Yemi Kujore

Blackdistrikt

Hello, good people. Today, we will be sharing an exclusive interview with the Founder & Creative Director of Black Distrikt Clothing Co. I have known Yemi for a couple of years and He’s been a consistent player in the streetwear business. When he told me about his new collection (view here) , I knew I had to turn the spotlights on.

BlackDistrikt is a streetwear brand based on design, simplicity and attention to details. Its an embodiment of clothing, culture & lifestyle. We had to improvise to make this possible, but it will inspire you notwithstanding.

Q&A with Yemi Kujore of Blackdistrikt

Tainsville: Kindly introduce yourself…

Yemi: I’m ‘Yemi Kujore and I’m 20years old. I’m the Founder & Creative Director of Black Distrikt Clothing Co.

Tainsville: Tell us about your brand…

Yemi: Black Distrikt is an urban streetwear brand. It’s a combination of lifestyle, culture, art & clothing, but the idea is longevity instead of overnight blowout; to have an increasing number of friends that will stay true over the years.

Tainsville: Why did you decide to start your own streetwear brand? 

Yemi: I started out of the urge to create a brand that’ll stand the test of time, do something different that will inspire posterity & also contribute in taking the Nigerian streetwear fashion to a more competitive level.

Tainsville: How long have you been in the streetwear business? 

Yemi: I’ve been in the streetwear business for 3years. First year was spent with Easy Clothing Co. after which I created Black Distrikt and I’ve been there till date.

Tainsville: How did it all start for you?

Yemi: Basically, it started 5 years back. I used to cut stencils, dab acrylic paint onto the t-shirts and add effects with polymark. Did this for 2 years & met ‘Dekunle (Skinyblink) who showed me how to build a brand out of a hobby. Thus, Easy Clothing was given birth to.

Tainsville: What were your early days like? 

Yemi: Early days were cool because I’ve always loved the idea of entrepreneurship, so I just had to sell the idea to my family & friends and that was it. Since I started, they have all been 110% behind me.

Tainsville: What attracted your initial clients?

Yemi: Well, I’ll say ‘design and exclusivity’ (which is the core of streetwear). Our designs portray various aspects of the brand like the year the brand started, all the company’s logos in various forms & colours, and also the fact that all products are limited in quantity.

Tainsville: How did you come up with the initial capital?

ME: Honestly started off without a dime. Honestly! My cousin sent me blank shirts for free & had to sell the final products to pay my screen printer. Talk about hustle

Tainsville: How do you come up with ideas for your creations? 

Yemi: God inspires me to create stuff & also getting positive feedback from our family (customers). There’s also the saying that you’re only as good as your last collection. So I try to get better by the collection.

Tainsville: Do you have any mentors?

Yemi: Yeah! Definitely! ‘Dekunle Aina (Skinyblink), Jeremy Biggers (Stem & Thorn) & Bobby Kim (The Hundreds).

Tainsville: What has been your proudest moment so far?

ME: My proudest moment is always meeting a new friend through the brand. The feeling is priceless. It’s like you & your friend support the same soccer team or love the same brand of automobile & that’s all you guys just talk about. The truth is, like everyone else, I’m also just a fan of Black Distrikt.

Tainsville: How lucrative has Blackdistrikt been?

Yemi: Moderately lucrative. The truth is, the bigger the brand gets, the more lucrative the business is, because we’ll need to create more products to satisfy the needs of our family (customers).

Tainsville: What differentiates Blackdistrikt from other streetwear brans out there?

Yemi: We sell more than just tees or sweatshirts or hats. We sell a brand, its values, and its purpose. We sell a substantive story. This is what helps us stand out.

Tainsville: What challenges are you currently facing?

Yemi: Major challenge for us is manufacturing. It’s not that easy, in fact, it’s not easy at all because I really don’t like creating stuff below a certain standard, so I get to really research to find really good manufacturers locally or sometimes manufacture overseas.

Tainsville: How can prospective customers reach you?

Yemi: www.blackdistrikt.com * follow on twitter – @BlackDistrikt & Facebook – www.facebook.com/blackdistrikt * BBM – 220D8465

Tainsville: Lastly, what’s the future for Blackdistrikt?

Yemi: You can expect more unique products, collaborations with local brands & artists, pop-up stores. Just to mention a few.

Tainsville: Thank you for your time.

There you go! Lend your voice to a consistent player and his brand. Have a good day

Introducing: BlackDistrikt 2013 Collection!

BlackDistrikt , a streetwear brand based on design, simplicity and attention to details released their 2013 collection today. The designs include the 3-colour combo, cheetah print trend, typo tee and paint drip. Here are a few photos of models rocking the tees. Dope stuff! I’m definitely coping these. You should too!


Blackdistrikt Tee

BlackDistrikt_5BlackDistrikt_3BlackDistrikt_2BlackDistrikt_4BlackDistrikt_4Support Your Local Distrikt Tee! All tees are in limited quantity! @BlackDistrikt

Artmosphere August, 2013 Edition: FRESH STYLES

tainsville_artmosphere

The quintessential literature and performance monthly parley, Artmosphere, is out with its August edition. The event curated by WriteHouse Collective, a leading social and creative enterprise is poised to improve the reading culture of the country by creating an enjoyable ambience for literature and sundry creative discourse.

This edition of Artmosphere, tagged “Fresh Styles” is an exploration of the works of relatively new voices and those who have deliberately chosen news styles to communicate to their audience. It will also feature a discourse on the challenges facing the creative industry in Nigeria. In the spirit of the theme, the event will be a deviation from the norm as we will be hosting three authors from different generations to not only share their works but also discuss what informed their literary development as writers.

Fresh Styles will play host to prolific writer, film critic and AMAA Awards Judge, Hyginus Ekwauzi– an author who has delved into the deep waters of poetry, prose, theatre and film exploring the complex exchanges of each genre. We will gain from his wealth of experience concerning the challenges of literature.  The event will also host Reward Nsirim, blogger, public health expert and author of the new collection of satiric short stories, “Fresh Air”. Su’eddie Agema, a poet and beacon of the arts and reading culture campaigns emerging from the north of Nigeria will also be at the event.

The anchors of the event will also be considering issues of the Nigerian narrative and how streamlined narrative styles and themes may have improved or strangled the followership of literature. Are creative writing schools and workshops important? Do they sieve the shaft of a writer’s skill, or merely make him a mirror of some other writer? Can our books be as “down to earth” as our films without losing its message, its strength and its market value?

The 8th edition of Artmosphere, Fresh Styles, has been made possible by literary and intellectual friends who are drawn to the bright prospects of a more enlightened, and prosperous society. Organizations like sankofa, iBridge Hub and IReadHope will also be on ground to provide the event with logistic support.

The August edition of Artmosphere tagged “Fresh Styles” will hold on Saturday, August 17, 2013

Venue: NuStreams Conference Centre, KM 110 Abeokuta road, Alalubosa GRA Extension, Ibadan

Time: 3pm-6pm

Guests:

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NB: I have been ‘uber-busy’. There are so many things I plan to do on here but other stuff have taken preference nowadays.  I have even been debating on whether its time to wrap up this blog…This is my attempt at an apology lol. I’ll be back, I just don’t know when.

Artmosphere June, 2013 Edition: City Life

ARTMOSPHERE June 2013

Artmosphere, a leading literary, arts and performance parley curated by WriteHouse Collective has consistently provided the needed ambience for literary, creative and intellectual empowerment in Nigeria.

This edition of Artmosphere, tagged “City Life” x-rays creative narratives that border on life and living in the cities. The city is not the comfort zone for a lot of people; however people struggle every day to make their city spaces a new home. Some associations of native ideals are formed but are tested by capital, commerce and interest. With the stories of our authors as materials for questioning, a wide range of ideas like rural-urban migration, urban culture as opposed to indigenous culture, infrastructure, environmental reactions to changes, and others, will crop up at the event.

The experiences of Africans in diaspora who are thriving in the global cities of the world with the attendant shocks of self-imposed exile will also be considered.

Eghosa Imasuen, author of the highly acclaimed novel, Fine Boys and Unoma Azuah, literary scholar, novelist and winner of the Ama Ata Aidoo Prize, will be reading from their works at the event. Skilled modern poets, Tosin Gbogi and Tolu Oloruntoba, will read from their poetry collections and also engage the audience on the themed discourse.

This 6th edition of Artmosphere marks two years of providing quality service in creativity and culture through the monthly arts parley.  For the parent social enterprise, WriteHouse, it is a celebration and a challenge to do more for those who look up to us for creative direction. WriteHouse Collective will be launching its online literary, culture and politics magazine, Sakonfa at the event.

The weekly magazine will provide the growing Nigerian reader a vista of interesting short stories, enduring poetry works, book, film and travel reviews. It will also regard the impetus of critical views on governance in the country through its guest column.  Submissions for political essays, creative works, photography and reviews should be sent to:  submissions@sakonfa.com.ng.

Artmosphere is organised by WriteHouse Collective, a creative enterprise, culture and arts firm and supported by Ibridge Hub, a place for people with great ideas to meet, learn and work. This edition is also supported by literary friends across the country.

The June edition of Artmosphere tagged “City Life” will hold by 3pm on Saturday, June 15, 2013.

Venue: NuStreams Conference Centre, KM 110 Abeokuta road, Alalubosa GRA Extension, Ibadan.

GUESTS:

Eghosa Imaseun

Eghosa Imasuen is a writer and medical doctor who was born in Ibadan but currently lives in Benin with his wife and twin sons. The prolific writer is versed in stories that are realistic and profound. He is the author of  To Saint Patrick, an alternate historical narrative (Novel) about the cause and events that may or may not have conspired towards the Nigerian civil war. He latest offering, Fine Boys, is a story of challenging university life and of real modern city existences.

Eghosa has contributed short stories to many international online platforms, like blackbiro.com and thenewgong.com. He has also posited strongly on socio-political issues at the recent TedX-Ife, a platform meant to inspire solutions to problems in immediate and global communities.

unoma-azuah

Unoma Azuah is an editor, literary scholar and writer.  She is a literary colossus with awards such as the Hellman/Hammett award, the Urban Spectrum award, the Leonard Trawick award and the Association of Nigerian Authors/NDDC Flora Nwapa award for her debut novel Sky-high Flames. Her most recent award, The Ama Ata Aidoo Prize, was for Edible Bones, a novel purposefully set on the travails of immigrants in the diaspora.

One of Unoma’s projects has been to explore the political disillusionment suffered by Africans due to corrupt government and their subsequent urge to migrate to the west even when they face alienation and homesickness. These themes are the focus of a poetry anthology called “On Broken Wings,” which she recently edited. Some of her affiliations include the International Resource Network (IRN Africa), a research and network group that focus on sexuality issues in Africa of which she is a board member; co-editor: Sentinel Annual Literature Anthology; co-editor “Outliers” a creative writing and scholarly journal about sexual minority issues in Africa; and Poetry editor of Sentinelnigeria.org. She is also the faculty sponsor of the Delta Sigma Tau: English Honours Society at Lane College

tosin.gbogi

Tosin Gbogi is the author of the volume of poetry—the tongues of a shattered s-k-y (2012).  He will read from this and two forthcoming volumes: “Where Do Secrets Go When They Die?” and “The Emperor Has Spoken and Other Poems”. A former Arts Editor with Kraft Books, Ibadan, Tosin is of the Department of English Studies, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko, Ondo State, Nigeria.

Tolu Oloruntoba is a physician and poet, and the publisher of Klorofyl Magazine. He is the author of the forthcoming poetry collection, Graffiti Paradise.

Artmosphere Presents February Edition: Loving Life

ARTMOSPHERE Feb1
It’s the second edition of Artmosphere, the quintessential music, poetry, performance and arts event in Nigeria. This edition is made possible by WriteHouse Collective; a creative enterprise, culture and arts firm, and Ibridge Hub; a place for people with great ideas to meet, learn and work. It is a creative and collaborative environment where young entrepreneurs and innovators in the city of Ibadan can bring their ideas to reality.

This edition of the monthly Book Culture and Lifestyle event suits the season of love but presents love in a multifaceted and dynamic way. No wonder the February edition is tagged “Loving Life”. The curator, ‘Femi Morgan, notes “Love is the stretch of words, insufficient for describing Life, yet Love brings forth life. Love is not despair, it is giving and forgiving. It is faith and grace; it is pleasant prejudice and subtle worship. Love means different things to different people.”


The February edition of Artmosphere tagged “Loving Life” holds on Saturday, February 16, 2013
Venue: NuStreams Conference Centre, KM 110 Abeokuta road, Alalubosa GRA Extension, Ibadan.
TIME: 3pm to 6pm

This edition plays host to Tade Ipadeola, renowned poet and winner of the Delphic Laurel in Poetry 2009, an award known as the enigmatic Olympic prize for poets around the world. The event will also feature Servio Gbadamosi, spoken word poet, lyricist and entrepreneur, and Michael Asuzu, spoken word poet from the University of Ibadan, among others.

Kent Oxygen, and Michael Obot, seasoned alternative music acts will also be at “Loving Life” to spice the event with love songs and the nostalgic songs of the oldies.

At “Loving Life”, we will be officially unveiling the electronic versions of Tade Ipadeola’s new literary offering, The Sahara Testament. The collection of poetry will be available and compactable to the Ipad, Nook, Kindle and e-reading public in Nigeria. WriteHouse Collective has acquired the authority to make it available in Nigeria, in order to ensure that Nigerians can purchase the book without any foreign exchange hassles. Ipadeola wrote The Sahara Testament over the space of seven years. During his writing, he challenged his muse by getting acquainted with the culture, arts, life and living of peoples across the Sahara desert. This collection promises to become a definitive work of literature that transcends language and race.  

Tade Ipadeola

Tade Ipadeola

Tade Ipadeola

Tade Ipadeola, a Nigerian, was born in 1970. He has published two volumes of poetry-A Time of Signs (2000) and The Rain Fardel (2005). He has also published short stories and essays. In 2009, he won the Delphic Laurel in poetry with his poem “Songbird” in Jeju, South Korea. His third volume of poetry, The Sahara Testaments-a sequence of 1000 quatrains on the Sahara is his latest work.
Tade Ipadeola is currently serving as the PEN (Nigeria Centre) President.
Tade lives in Ibadan where he practices law.

Michael Asuzu

Michael Asuzu

Michael Asuzu

Michael Asuzu is a spoken word poet and student of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Ibadan. Michael believes in demystifying and making poetry accessible to a wider audience. He brings his words to life by infusing the foundational elements of pop and hip hop culture into his poetry performances.

Servio Gbadamosi

Servio

Servio

Servio Gbadamosi is a spoken word artiste, lyricist and creative entrepreneur. He has earned his corporate experience as Human Resource personnel, Art organizer and as a Social Media executive. He is currently the Managing Partner/Head of Research and Development at WriteHouse Collective. His poems have appeared in different national dailies and in Crossroads, an anthology of poems chosen from across Africa and the diaspora in memory of Christopher Okigbo.  He is the unpublished author of the viral collection, A Tributary in Servitude. He will be performing a medley and some poems from his upcoming collection of love poems. 

Music Acts

Kent Oxygen 
Hassan Kehinde Daniel, Kent Oxygen is an African folk and Jazz artist. He is a lyrically rich, comedic and inspiring songwriter. The graduate of Computer Science and Statistics from University of Nigeria, Nsukka, is fecund in the use the acoustic guitar, piano and drums. Kent Oxygen started his career in the 90’s where he rose as music director at his church. 

OluMichael  

olumichael

olumichael

Micheal Obot AKA Olumicheal is a song writer and singer. He reaches out to his audience using the soul genre.
Obot is a graduate of Accountancy but he prefers the music counts of the piano. He is currently working on his album, and has already recorded singles such as “Show Me Love”, “Only You Can Make Your Dreams Come True”, “Aiye Ole”, “Eledumare”, and more