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Spotlight: Institute of Contemporary Art & Film, The First Museum of Contemporary Art and Film

A New Home for Contemporary Art and Film in Nigeria

The ICAAF is a new museum and cultural center that aims to promote and celebrate contemporary art and film from Nigeria and beyond–Located in Ilorin, the capital city of Kwara State.

The museum covers an area of 3,000 square meters. It features a state-of-the-art design by Studio Contra, a young Nigerian architecture firm led by Olayinka Dosekun-Adjei, and consists of several spaces, including post-production studios, a film screening room and lecture hall, co-working spaces, art galleries, a café, a sculpture garden, and a bookshop.

The ICAAF, directed by Dr. Ayo Adewunmi, a renowned Art Historian and curator who has worked at various museums and galleries around the world, and was founded under the advisory of Dolly Kola-Balogun, the founder and creative director of Retro Africa gallery in Abuja. Kola-Balogun is the first gallery director to successfully plan and execute a visual art institution of this magnitude in the country from the ground up. She commented:

"ICAAF is set to position Ilorin as a cultural capital in Northern Nigeria and strengthen the linkages between the North and the South through cultural transmission. By solidifying Ilorin's post as a creative hub, ICAAF will attract greater tourism and investment opportunities. With more robust funding, Ilorin has the potential to cultivate industries as Lagos has done for the film industry in the south."

According to the museum's director, Dr. Ayo Adewunmi, "ICAAF will be a catalyst for cultural exchange and dialogue between Nigeria and the rest of the world. It will also be a source of inspiration and empowerment for young Nigerians who aspire to pursue careers in art and film."

The museum aims to celebrate and promote Nigerian creativity, as well as foster an environment of learning, education and tourism for the region. It will offer community-based outreach programmes, promotional activities, and strategic partnerships with educational and cultural institutions within and outside Nigeria. It will also host curated exhibitions, workshops, residencies, screenings, talks, and festivals that will showcase the diversity and dynamism of contemporary African art and film.

The ICAAF is expected to be a landmark destination for visual art in Nigeria and the wider region, as well as a potential tourist attraction for foreigners who want to experience the rich and diverse artistic expressions of Africa.

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Spotlight: Institute of Contemporary Art & Film, The First Museum of Contemporary Art and Film

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