The Kwara State Government is poised to revolutionize the creative sector in Nigeria with the launch of a state-of-the-art Institute of Contemporary African Art & Film (ICAAF) in Ilorin, the state’s capital.
The historic edifice, designed by Studio Contra, a young Nigerian architecture firm is a purpose-built cultural museum of visual and cinematic arts, with post-production studios, facilities and screening room, art galleries and studio workshop
ICAAF, founded under the advisory of Dolly Kola-Balogun, Founder and Creative Director of Retro Africa gallery will be an impressive architectural landmark combining contemporary design with a diverse programme spanning across mediums.
Kola-Balogun is the first gallery director to successfully plan and execute a visual art institution of this significance in Nigeria from the ground up. The edifice is scheduled to open in Spring of 2022.
The project is led by Kola-Balogun’s sister, Olayinka Dosekun-Adjei, an architectural and urban designer, who has led architectural practices around the world.
While Nigerian films have made their mark through Nollywood, ICAAF is the first monumental cultural institution that celebrates and promotes Nigerian creativity.
Through this development Kwara State will begin to foster an environment of learning, education and tourism for the region.
The state’s governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq has always spoken of his love for the creative sector, the building and completion of this driven facility that celebrates the local culture content while offering a futuristic vision for Nigeria will demonstrate this love.
Upon its completion, the state subsidized but privately run Institute will become a point of focus through its community-based outreach programs, promotional activities and strategic partnerships with educational and cultural institutions within Nigeria and abroad.
“In Nigeria, we have Nollywood and music, but there’s much to do. These boys are working from their laptops, mixing music. Music is not easy, but in film production, more is required. Our films are not competing in the ordinary Burkina Faso Film Festival (FESPACO), because what we’re shooting is videos, not movies.
We are not doing cinematography because we don’t have studios. We cannot do the last mile, which is post-production. Yes, there’s a place to meet in Lagos, Accra and Johannesburg. But because of capacity and waiting time in Lagos, some go to Ghana. So, we said, let’s do it here,” the governor explained. Abdulrazaq, who is an avid art collector, also plans to have an art exhibition once the facility is completed. For this, he wishes to invite the King of Morocco, Mohammed VI, to the launch.