It was a weekend where creativity, excellence, originality were celebrated in grandstyle as the art community gathered together to honour the best entries for the 2018 Life in My City Art Festival, held on the 28th of October, 2018 at the International Conference Centre of the Institute of Management and Technology in Enugu.
It was a select gathering of patrons, collectors and lovers of art including the Enugu state governor and host, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi who was the Special Guest of Honour; Prince Yemisi Shyllon; the Obi of Onitsha, HRH Igwe Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe and HRH Lawrence Agubuzu, Chairman of the Enugu Council of Traditional Rulers among others.
Reputed as one of the most consistent art competitions in the country, attendees were treated to a colourful display of art works and installations, chosen from the final 50 entries selected by a jury of experts, and rousing musical performance by the African Vocals music group.
Speaking at the event, Dennis Okoro, Director at the MTN Foundation, commended the organisers of the long running festival, as their dedication aligns with MTN’s continuous commitment to promoting arts and culture in Nigeria. In his words, “MTN, by its support of the Life in My City Arts Festival, as well as other arts and culture initiatives, continues to set new standards for corporate Nigeria, while supporting the creativity and industry of our young people and opening new vistas to showcase the beauty of our people internationally.”
The festival, which gets bigger each year, witnessed over 400 entries from the entire country, with final shortlist of 50. Ifedilichukwu Chibuike, a Fine and Applied Art graduate of the IMT who had participated in many editions emerged the overall winner. Aptly named Enigma, Chibuike’s winning entry is an installation piece made of copper wire, wool, long play record and white pull, designed to depict how the symbolic staff of peace is replaced with the weapons that often lead to mysterious and tragic occurrences in society. He received a 500,000 Naira cash prize and an all-expenses paid trip to the Dakar Art Biennale (also known as Dak’Art), one of Africa’s most prestigious art exhibitions.
The MTN Foundation’s support for the Life in My City Art Festival is part of its Arts and Culture initiative, which promotes various art, drama and music productions. As part of the activities lined up for the last quarter of the year, the Foundation has already supported such well-loved shows as ‘Fela and the Kalakuta Queens’ and ‘Legends, the Musical’. Arts & Culture lovers can look forward to other MTNF sponsored performances like Our Son the Minister, Oba Esugbayi and Made in Nigeria Poetry show, amongst others.