The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) Lagos, will official open on Saturday, June 23, 2018. MOCA Lagos is taking off from the studio space of Uchay Chima; pending when a permanent location will be secured. It is located at 2 Idowo Ajao Street, Ajao Estate, Anthony Village, Lagos, Nigeria
Chima reveals this to Arts and Culture Place in a chat. He says the idea of establishing the museum was initiated by him in 2017 after his discussion with an art curator, Bisi Silver, eight years earlier.
“Bisi Silva encouraged me to start from somewhere when she visited my studio and after that I began to think of how it can be achieved. I want artists to know that what we are doing here is for every artist in Nigeria. The museum is not about me and we need to come together to make it one of the best contemporary art museums in the world,” he pleads.
Chima says others in the team include: Kelani Abass, Iheanyi Onwuegbucha, Richardson Ovbiebo, Oluchi Zim, Winifred Okpapi, Roli Afinotan and Aderemi Adegbite.
MOCA Lagos he asserts was conceived in direct response to the current revolutionary conversations on the imperatives of revitalizing and maximizing the vast potentials of the Nigerian creative economy, and the growing demand by experts in the cultural ecosystem for a curatorial institution that reflects the contemporary realities and needs of the visual art industry.
“We intend to achieve this by serving diverse audience through exhibitions, public engagement programmes, dialogues on pressing issues both local and international; fostering a dynamic space for the exploration and continuous evolution of contemporary African Art.
“MOCA Lagos uses the visual arts as a point of departure for exploring new and challenging interdisciplinary artistic production, interpretation, collection, and preservation of art.
He affirms that by using alternative spaces in Lagos for exhibitions and public programmes, “MOCA Lagos aims to leverage on interventions in the public space as a strategy for direct public engagement. We strongly believes in public participation and creating spaces to showcase art from within the community through dedicated projects that intervenes in public spaces. Curators, art institutions and other organisations are welcome to partner with us.”