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POLARTICS

DADA Gallery

DADA Gallery

DADA Gallery

DADA Gallery is a gallery for contemporary African art. The gallery is passionate about discovering and promoting emerging artists from the continent and the diaspora. Discover our collection of original artwork and limited edition prints.


3D Ausstellungen

  • DADA Gallery

    Escape To Within

    14 Jul 2021 – 08 Aug 2021

    Dada Gallery (formerly POLARTICS), is delighted to present Escape to Within the first solo exhibition of Nigerian artist Bunmi Agusto, running from 14 July to 8 August 2021 at Cromwell Place, London. The exhibition features 19 new figurative works drawn from the surrealist world of the artist’s making. Charting the migration of a group of figures across a labyrinthine landscape of braided forests and dark waters, Agusto illustrates the surreal universe she holds in her mind, so titled, ‘Within.’ Born in Lagos, Nigeria and living in London from the age of sixteen, Agusto transforms her sense of alienation that she experienced in life between these two lands, through her artistic practice, using the metaphor of hybridity within her imagined world. Depicted in pastel pencil, chalk and mixed media on paper, Agusto creates a landscape of hybrid figures that are realised as an amalgamation of textures, scenery and iconography that resonate with her cultural consciousness as a Lagosian. Agusto’s fantastical depictions of the multiplicity of her Nigerian identity, draw from traditional Nigerian imagery and contemporary pop-culture references. Studying cultural theory from a young age, both in Nigeria concerning the critique of cultural traditions, and in the UK with a view to the diaspora, Agusto takes inspiration from science fiction and modern cinema and television, citing references including the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Alice in Wonderland. Escape to Within brings together a new body of work which builds her world into further realms of liminal distortion and dislocation. Often depicted in the absence of traditional perspective, light and gravity, Agusto supports her landscape instead upon a framework of braids, texture and abstract forms. The hybrids are created by imbuing the human figure with elements that symbolise the artist’s sense of self. These elements often originate as memories and may take the form of flora, fauna or iconography, as with the shape of a cross from a memory of Sunday School informing a head adornment. In contrast, non-hybrids are representations and recurring figures from Agusto’s daily life. Family members, friends and passersby are subsumed into her works. Director of DADA Gallery, Oyinkansola Dada said: ‘We are delighted to present the first major comprehensive display of Bunmi Agusto’s works, whose practice resonates with my vision for the gallery. Bunmi is an artist that creates with the greatest intention and care. It has been a pleasure to see her practice grow over the years, continuing to push new and exciting boundaries.’

  • DADA Gallery

    Forgotten Icons

    06 Mar 2021 – 06 Jun 2021

    POLARTICS is pleased to present ‘Forgotten Icons’, a solo exhibition by Djibril Drame. Opening in Dakar on the 6th of March at the Yaas Hotel, Almadies, this body of work celebrates two women Senegalese artists -- traditional singer Yande Codou Sene and tassukat Aby Gana Diop.

  • DADA Gallery

    Everything Good Will Come

    05 Dec 2020 – 10 Jan 2021

    POLARTICS is pleased to present Everything Good Will Come. A joint exhibition featuring works by Bunmi Agusto and Chukwudubem Ukaigwe. This exhibition brings together two young Nigerian artists who partake in reimagining the role of the Nigerian youth. Together, the works comprise a story which depicts a reawakening and the reignition of hope. Following the brutal suppression of protests against police brutality in Nigeria, a pertinent question lingers, “what next?”. What next for demanding accountability? What next for political organising? What next for demanding a right to life? In this state of unknowing and questioning, we thought it important to bring together two artists, both in the early stages of their careers, whose work provide a mirror to young Nigerians both at home and abroad who over the past few weeks have shared a sense of political and social solidarity which they are experiencing for the first time in their generation. These works provide a vessel through which new nodes of existence and social participation can be explored, expanding our view of ourselves and bringing us closer to answering the question of what next whilst reclaiming our rightful space within all forms of socio-political discourse. Bunmi Agusto’s paintings follow a woman of the fictional Aruaro clan, which translates into blind from the Bini language of the artist’s maternal tribe, the Edo people. Within Agusto’s practice, this clan can be identified by the tribal marks on their cheeks in which the ancestral eyes are nestled. This second set of eyes are closed throughout childhood and only open when the Aruaro encounters their ancestors through a projection of oneself in their dreams, as depicted in this series, and wakes up with both sets of eyes open. During this rite of passage, the Aruaro and their ancestors engage in a dialogue that leaves both parties enlightened in both traditional and contemporary perspectives. This body of work ties closely to present day, in which young Nigerians who have been born into a system of silence finally reach a point of political awakening. At the very core of her practice, she questions what objects trigger her Nigerian cultural consciousness using Sherry Turkle’s theory of evocative objects as vessels anchoring personal histories and cultural identity. Chukwudubem Ukaigwe’s paintings depict Nigeria’s youth in their multiplicity of identities. At the core of this is the acknowledgement that their existence cannot be discussed with a monolithic view as Nigeria happens to be a repository of variances in experience. Ukaigwe’s paintings reimagine a world where strength is garnered in diversity, everyone coming together despite antithesis of personal beliefs, to challenge paradigms of incompetent leadership, vicious classism and neocolonial oligarchy -- much similar to what was experienced at the peak of the protests. He holds onto the silver lining of hope and a belief in creating a Nigerian utopia, a Nigeria where no one is judged or condemned to a barbaric default, because of their gender, class, occupation, upbringing or sexuality. The purpose of these paintings is to create a cognitive space for an epistemological literature of gathering. A space for a dialectical assembly of young Nigerians who collectively possess a strong affinity for liberation.

  • DADA Gallery

    I Hope This Finds You Well

    09 May 2020 – 15 Jul 2020

    POLARTICS is pleased to present I Hope This Finds You Well. A joint exhibition of ruminative works by adeoluwa oluwajoba and Femi Johnson. They offer a reflection of their minds as they grasp the concept of stillness and isolation in a changing world. Space is a central focus, acting as both stimulus and subject matter. adeoluwa focuses primarily on male bodies and their relation to “the built and imagined space”. He presents 'politics of shared living' and ‘portraits from solitude’ in which he observes the dynamic forms and shapes the bodies assume in their occupation of space, and the attendant possibilities for influence, symbiosis and subversion between both forms. He considers the relationship between bodies and their dynamic negotiations of roles and positions with the lived environment. adeoluwa is interested in utilising the male body as a site of enquiry into socio-political, cultural and heteronormative (mis)conceptions whilst exploring the notion of shared living and the negotiated space. The body of work is informed by his ongoing personal experiences of sharing a flat with friends and being isolated with them during the government imposed lockdown in Lagos, Nigeria. Femi Johnson engages with the external as he captures vast expanses of Lagos, the sprawling economic capital of Nigeria, as it comes to an unfamiliar halt. He presents the rare emptiness that pervades the city, impacting on the viewer a sense of timelessness and spectrality. Photographing the city on long walks, he captures the symbolism of this unprecedented moment and uses Lagos as a muse for contemplation. He shoots both the familiar and the unfamiliar, sometimes offering a unique window from forgotten spaces. These spaces become the observer as they look upon a changing city.

    neueste Werke

    • Bunmi Agusto

      Collective Entry, 2021
      118.9 x 84.1 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Lead The Way Out, 2021
      118.9 x 84.1 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Wandering III, 2021
      59.4 x 42 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & ink on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Wandering II, 2021
      59.4 x 42 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & ink on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Wandering I, 2021
      59.4 x 42 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & ink on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      The Path Taken, 2021
      59.4 x 84.1 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, Acyrlic, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Surfacing, 2021
      90 x 89 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Beneath The Surface, 2021
      59.4 x 84.1 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Pull Me To The Surface, 2021
      59.4 x 84.1 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth X, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth IX, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth VIII, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth VII, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth VI, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth V, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth IV, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth III, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth II, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Bunmi Agusto

      Braided Labyrinth I, 2021
      42 x 29.7 cm (h x w)
      Pastel pencils on sandpaper, ink & coloured pencils on paper
    • Djibril Drame

      Forgotten Icons 1, 2021
      114.3 x 76.2 x 1 cm (h x w x d)
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