BOB Nosa, a Nigerian Visual Artist who went on residency programme to Argentina, yesterday said he was able to collaborate with an Argentine artist, Silvia Flora Fay.
Nosa told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the collaboration gave birth to the work they both titled “The Argentina lady with Bob Nosa” which was sold immediately to a Nigerian art lover.
Nosa said he produced 20 works during the residency programme which commenced April 2 and ended May 11.
The programme was sponsored by Argentina Government and Africa Flora Art Residency.
According to him, the programme was an eye opener for him as he had been familiarised with styles of Argentine artists and the peculiarities of the society which would have great influence on his subsequent works.
“During my residency programme in Argentina, I was able to collaborate with an Argentine lady, Silvia Flora Fay, who had also been practicing for years.
“It was a beautiful experience because I was loved by everyone, they love my art and even wanted to extend my visit. I had two different exhibitions during the residency programme with the theme: “Challenging Inhumanity”; my work focused on solving Argentina societal problems like: social inequality, ghetto life, corruption and more.
“I did a painting on the country’s problem with the “Ghetto Kids”; these are uneducated Argentines who are living on the street, they are drug addicts, always with gun, they pose serious threat to many people. I donated that work to the Nigerian Embassy in Argentina and the essence of the work was that I drew their government’s attention to these people, that government should take them away from the street for rehabilitation,” he said.
Nosa said plans were in top gear to have more future collaborations with more Argentine artists as he had signed a contract with the Argentina government to visit once in a year to further impact the society.
Nosa said that his major challenges in Argentina were language barrier, the extreme cold weather and lack of access to good quality materials to work with.
“I had the weather to contend with, it was an extremely cold one and I did a painting to depict this which I titled “Man Cold”; their major language is Spanish, so getting someone to translate, whenever am to communicate with them was a big problem.
“At times, the interpreter gives wrong message, also the materials given to me were of very low standard which they are used to, so I had to manage the materials,” he said.
The artist said his visit to Argentina had endeared him to works of late Argentine artists Carlos Alonso and Antonio Barni.
He said these artists had similar style of painting and method of conveying message on canvas with him which he referred to as “Protest Art”.
”During my leisure, I go through books and arts made by these great Argentine artists and I was able to learn from them; their works greatly inspired me and I got lots of motivation from them,” he said.
Nosa said he was made to understand that he was the first Nigerian artist to visit the country on residency programme.
He said this attested to the fact that the country had neglected racism which was very dominant among them years back and he had a painting depicting this “Black Man in Argentina”.
According to him, his works during the residency programme had further changed the negative impression the Argentines had of the black and especially Nigerians.
“Most of the Argentines, having seen my works, make impressive comments about the blacks and Nigerians, they are friendly, hospitable, peaceful and organised.
“Through my works and a host of other African artist’s works, the Argentines now believe that the blacks are equally intelligent and creative,” he said.