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Modern & Contemporary Art

Modern and Contemporary art is at the core of connecting MOWAA to West Africa’s present society and thriving creative culture.
"One of my principal goals of MOWAA's contemporary and modern offering is to build on the efforts to tell our stories and the intricate connections and links that exist – starting with Nigerian Modernism and boldy reaching to the many corners of West African Modern and Contemporary art history, yet to be developed and yet to be discovered. The possibilities of West African art are exciting, but it cannot be an island. ” 
- Aindrea Emelife

Key Areas of Focus and Goals

  • Advancing the field of academic research in contemporary and modern West African art  

  • Collect and display West African and Diasporic art, with a preliminary research emphasis on Nigerian Modernism

  • Generating new, multi-faceted narratives and interpretations of West African art and history  

  • Establish relationships with global museums and institutions, with the view of creating a truly global art ecosystem by way of education partnerships, touring exhibitions and other points of knowledge exchange 

  • Supporting and developing arts and museum education, by way of curatorial fellowships, art professional training and museology development

With these key focuses in mind, MOWAA is committed to supporting Craftsmen and Artists in West Africa and beyond. 

As a result, MOWAA is dedicated to creating infrastructure and programming to support Nigeria’s growing population of creatives through providing artist residencies, live and workspaces, academic research facilities, exhibition spaces, and opportunities for hands-on curatorial practice and exhibition management. 

Set in a rainforest garden, it will enable visitors to interact with nature and reflect on the influence of the natural environment on art and artisanship in West Africa. Additionally, the Rainforest Gallery will serve as a curatorial practice test lab.  

MOWAA’s Rainforest Gallery, due to open in 2024, will be a world class 1,500sqm exhibition space designed by Worofila, a Dakar-based architectural studio specialized in bioclimatic architecture. 

MOWAA envisions its Rainforest Gallery as a destination for promoting and displaying art ranging from the ancient to the contemporary.

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