The British Council – the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities – today unveiled a building wrap, a work by British artist Laura Aldridge. The work was created following a visit to the Nike Arts Centre in Abuja and a textile workshop with 35 women based in Abuja as part of the Go Woman Go! Project.
The building wrap is displayed on the headquarters of the Ministry of Women Affairs Building, currently under construction, on Ralph Shodeinde Street in Abuja’s Central Business District.
In addition to the workshop at the Nike arts centre and the building wrap, Go Woman Go! also includes a collaboration between Laura and pottery makers in Giri Suburb of the Federal Capital to produce ceramic vessels which will be on display at House 33 Gallery at Dar Es Salaam St, Wuse 2 in Abuja. A film and a limited edition artist’s publication accompany the project.
Through the showcase elements of the project, we celebrate two Nigerian ‘making’ traditions and promote the idea of art in public spaces to stimulate awareness and debate about how public art provides new ways to experience the city.
Laura Aldridge said of the project: “I am excited about the possibilities of working in different contexts; going to a different country, responding to what is on ground and creating a new body of work. It is beyond just coming to Nigeria to wrap a building and make some pots but more about the organic process involved in doing all of these and all the things that happen around it”
Connie Price, Country Director British Council said: “I am very pleased with how Go Woman Go! has brought together a female British artist with Nigerian women working on Nigerian ‘making’ techniques. Since September 2015 there have been more than 30 projects and over 340 events in art, fashion, design, theatre, dance, music, literature and film throughout Nigeria and events showcasing Nigerian creativity in the UK. I hope it has bought us closer together; forged new links and that we can build on what we have learnt in the future. I hope the building wrap adds colour to the environment and to the day of everyone who passes”
The Go Woman Go! building wrap was made possible with the kind support of the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development Abuja. It is one of two public art installations that are part of the British Council’s UK/Nigeria 2015–16 season, which aims to build new audiences, create new collaborations and strengthen relationships between the two countries. The other public art project is an exhibition of Wind Sculptures VI by Yinka Shonibare (MBE) at Ndubuisi Kanu Park, in Ikeja, Lagos.