Emeka Okereke

Emeka Okereke

Medium: Photography, Film. Literature
Administrative Role: Founder & Artistic Director

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Bio

Emeka Okereke, born in 1980, is a Nigerian photographer who lives and works between Africa and Europe, moving from one to the other on a frequent basis. He came in contact with photography in 2001. He is a member of Depth of Field (DOF) collective, a group made up of six Nigerian photographers. Presently, his works oscillate between diverse mediums. He uses photography, poetry, video and collaborative projects to address issues pertinent to his convictions. His works deal mainly with the questions of co-existence (beyond the limitations of predefined spaces), otherness and self-discovery. Often times they are subtle references to the socio-political issues of our times. Another aspect of his practise lies in project organising which artistic interventions to promote exchanges cutting across indigenous and international platforms. To this effect he organized the first ever photographic exchange projects between a school in France and one in Nigeria involving the Fine Art School of Paris and Yaba College of Arts and Technology Lagos. He is the Founder and Artistic Director of “Invisible Borders Trans-African Photography Project” an annual photographic project which assembles up to ten artists from Africa towards a roadtrip across Africa. There has been three editions of the project since 2009. Through Emeka Okereke Photography & Projects, he co-ordinates projects based on exchanges. The most recent of these projects include: Crossing Compasses, Lagos-Berlin Photo Exchange (May – June 2012) and Converging Visions: Nigeria – Netherlands Photo Exchange (June – September 2012) In 2003, he won the Best Young Photographer award from the AFAA “Afrique en Création” in the 5thedition of the Bamako Photo Festival of photography. He has a Bachelors/Masters degree from the National Fine Art School of Paris and has exhibited in biennales and art festivals in different cities of the world, notably Lagos, Bamako, Cape Town, London, Berlin, Bayreuth, Frankfurt, Nurnberg, Brussels, Johannesburg, New York, Washington, Barcelona, Seville, Madrid, Paris, etc. He has also won several awards both in Nigeria and Internationally.

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Links: Website:
www.emekaokereke.com

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EDUCATION

2010 – 2012

  • Masters Artistic Research: Royal Academy of Arts, The Hague, Netherlands.

2006-2008

  • National Superior School of Fine Arts of Paris. France (Master’s degree, Multi-media/ photography video and sound/ November 2008. Final Project: “Bagamoyo – Photography And The Useful Space. Maputo, Mozambique June 2008)

2006

  • National Superior School of Fine Arts of Paris. France (Bachelors of Art)

PROJECTS/ RESIDENCIES/ COMMISSIONS

2012

  • Invisible Borders 2012: Artistic Director of Invisible Borders Trans-African Road Trip from Lagos to Libreville.
  • Co-Coordinator of “Converging Visions” Photography Exchange Project (Nigeria – Netherlands).
  • Residency at CBK Zuidoost, Bijlmer, Amsterdam South. The Netherlands

2011

  • Invisible Borders 2011: Artistic Director of the third edition of Invisible Borders Trans-African Road Trip from Lagos to Addis Ababa.

2010

  • Africa.es: Photographic project involving 7 African Artist producing works in 7 different cities of Spain for 11 days commissioned by the Spanish Ministry of Culture. July 2010.
  • Invisible Borders 2010: Coordinator of the second edition of the photographic road trip project, involving 12 Nigerian photographers traveling by road from Lagos to Dakar (Senegal). April 2010.

2009

  • Residency at Bag Factory Studio, Johannesburg (April – June 2009)
  • Invisible Borders 2009 – Initiator and coordinator of a photographic road trip project involving 10 Nigerian photographers who traveled by road from Lagos to Bamako, and creating images. November 2009.
  • Lagos – Paris 2008: Coordinator of a project involving a 2-weeks exchange workshop between photography students of the Fine Art School of Paris and the Art students of Yabatech Lagos. Venue is Paris. 27th of November – 11th of December 2009.

2008

  • Photography and The Useful Space:  Photographic project in Maputo (Mozambique). Experimenting on art and the public – Project in collaboration with the French ministry for foreign affairs and the French-Mozambican Cultural Centre in Maputo.
  • Paris – Lagos 2008: Initiator and coordinator of photography exchange project between photo students from Fine Art School of Paris and Yabatech Lagos 2008.

2007

  • Do We Need Cola – Cola to Dance?

Director of Photography for the project carried out in 6 cities of Africa: Lagos, Cairo, Johannesburg, Maputo, Nairobi and Cameroun. Experimentation on Contemporary dance and The Public Space. Coordinated by Dancer, Qudus Onikeku. 2004/2005

  • Artistic residency program at the Cité Internationale des Arts, sponsored by the French embassy in Nigeria.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

Position

Founder and Artistic Director of Invisible Borders Trans-African Photography Initiative (2009 till date)  

Solo Exhibitions (Selected)

2008

  • Bagamoyo- Photography and the Useful Space. Catembe, Maputo 2008.
  • Unspoken Hero – Neukölln Museum Berlin, Germany
  • Under-City, Gallerie CROUS. Paris, France

2006

  • Rituals, Agence Française de Développement. Paris, France.

2005

  • Hidden Place, French Cultural Centre. Lagos, Nigeria.

2004

  • Black & White, sponsored by MC2A and the Town Council of Bordeaux. FR

2003

  • Rituals, French Cultural Centre. Lagos, Nigeria.

Collective Exhibitions (Selected)

2012

  • Exhibition at CBK Zuidoost, Amsterdam (out come of 10 weeks residency).  Nov. 2012
  • New Museum of New York: Exhibition with Invisible Borders Trans-African Photography Project.

2011

  • Africa.es photo Exhibition at Archive House, Abuja – Nigeria (May 2011)
  • Africa.es photo Exhibition at Circulo Des Bella Artès, Madrid – Spain (February 2011)

2010

  • Invisible Borders at Kunsthalle Bern (Bern Museum) Switzerland (October – Dec 2010)
  • *ATOPIA- Art and City in 21st Century. CCCB Barcelona, Spain (Feb 2010)

2009

  • 8th Edition of Bamako Photography Encounters. Bamako, Mali (November 2009)
  • Photoquai  2009 (a public space photography Biennale) Musée Quai Branly Paris. (Sept. 2009)
  • 2nd Pan African Festival of Arts of Algeria, Algiers 2009. (July 2009)
  • Adding Subtractions – Bag Factory Studio Johannesburg (June 2009)
  • 2nd Thessaloniki Biennale of Arts, Greece 2009. (May 2009)
  • 10th Havana Biennale, Cuba 2009 (March 2009)*A Tale of One City, Oslo Museum Norway (February 2009).

2008

  • 1st Johannesburg Art Fair, South Africa. Curated by Simon Njami.
  • Black Paris, Musée d’Ixelles, Brussels. Curated by Kirsten Pinther.

2007

  • Paris Black, Museum of World Cultures. Frankfurt, Germany.
  • Coïncidence, Cité Internationale Des Arts. Paris, France.

2006

  • Another World, National Library of France (La BNF). Paris, France.
  •  Nouvelle Afrique, 60 African photographers in the 20th district of Paris organized by Africultures.
  • Paris Black, Iwalewa House. Bayreuth, Germany. Curated by Kerstin Pinther.
  • Snap Judgement, International Center of Photography. New York. Curated by Okwui Enwezor.

2005

  • Labo Photo, a look into the life of Africans in Seine St. Denis by 6 African photographers. Paris, France.

2004

  • Made In Africa Milan, Italy (Rituals series)

2003

  • 5th Bamako Biennale of Photography (Photography Encounters)

  AWARDS  2009

  • Artist Of The Year:  The Future Nigeria Award 2009- An accomplishment award for Nigerian Professionals.

2008

  • Winner of “Visa Pour La Création 2008”.  For the project “Photography and the Public Space” Maputo June/ July 2008, awarded by the French Ministry of foreign affairs.

2006

  • 1st runner-up: Future Nigeria, an accomplishment prize for young Nigerian artists.

2005

  • 3 years full scholarship to study at the National Fine Art School in Paris, awarded by the French Embassy in Nigeria.

2004

  • Tv5 Prize for Best Photography at the exhibition ‘Made In Africa’. Milan, Italy.

2003

  • Prize of AFAA, Afrique en Création: Best Young Photographer of the 5th Festival of photography. Bamako, Mali.

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