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Invisible Borders: Borders Within 2016

The Retreat

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The Invisible Borders Trans-Nigeria Road Trip 2016 (tagged ‘Borders Within’) kicked off on May 12, 2016 with a five-day retreat at the serene Chaka Beach Resort at Eleko, Lagos. This year, a total of nine participants will be taking part in the road trip – seven artists and two administrators: Emeka Okereke, photographer/film-maker, and founder of Invisible Borders; Emmanuel Iduma, writer and four-time participant in Invisible Borders road trips; Zainab Odunsi, photographer; Yinka Olújọba, writer; Yagazie Emezi, photographer; Eloghosa Osunde, writer/photographer; Uche Okonkwo, writer; Innocent Ekejiuba, project manager for the trip, and Ellen Kondowe, head of communications for Invisible Borders.

After settling in at the resort, the participants gathered that same afternoon to relax by the beach and get to know each other. The artists also talked about the questions and interests they have with regard to the road trip, and discussed their expectations and the work that they intend to do while on the journey.

EOP_7154The preoccupations of each artist are as diverse as the individuals themselves: Yagazie is interested in women and their relationship with their bodies, particularly the blemishes and scars they might carry; Yinka’s work will explore ‘immapancy’ (geographical illiteracy) among Nigerians, as well as the effects of violence on their everyday lives. Uche will be considering language in relation to identity, as well as the validity of Nigeria’s claim to ‘unity in diversity’; Emeka will be producing a documentary on the road trip, and will be exploring personal archives from the Nigerian Civil War. Zainab’s work will focus on the idea of masculinity in Nigeria; Eloghosa will be considering the concept of home, from the angle of ‘who’ people are from, as opposed to ‘where’; Emmanuel will be exploring the idea of the intimate stranger, and how lasting, meaningful relationships can be formed from fleeting contact.

On day two, Friday, May 13, the participants started out watching an Al Jazeera documentary that followed the 2012 Invisible Borders road trip, from Lagos to Libreville. The documentary presented a visual portrayal of the early days of the collective and highlighted the ways in which it has evolved. Day two also marked the start of portfolio presentations, with Yagazie and Yinka presenting respectively. The idea behind the portfolio presentations was to consider the participant’s past work and how it relates, however loosely, with the work they intend to carry on during the trip. The participants also got to meet and hear from staff of Diamond Bank, one of the sponsors of the trip. Nkem Nwaturuocha spoke on behalf of the company, expressing Diamond Bank’s passion for innovation and exploring new frontiers, particularly within Nigeria.EOP_6937

Portfolio presentations continued on day three, with Zainab and Uche presenting their work. Day four witnessed the last of the portfolio presentations, with Emmanuel, Eloghosa and Emeka talking about their work. The group also watched the film Lagos to Addis Ababa 2011, which documented Invisible Borders’ 2011 road trip. But it wasn’t all work and no play during the retreat. The artists were able to take the occasional break from their work and discussions to bond while enjoying the facilities at the resort.

On Monday, May 16, the Invisible Borders Press Conference held at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Yaba. All participants of the road trip were in attendance, with each artist speaking about their work prior to the trip, and the new work they intended to produce during the journey. Emeka Okereke also took the time to thank the sponsors – Diamond Bank, Peugeot Nigeria and Nikon – and media partners for this year’s trip.

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“I Don’t Stumble Upon a Scene” – Interview with Zaynab Odunsi

The Invisible Borders “Borders Within” road trip has begun. Every week, I’ll bring you a conversation with each participant. Two weeks ago, I spoke with Emeka Okereke and Emmanuel Iduma. Today, I speak with Zaynab Ọdúnsì, an award-winning photographer who also works as a full time lecturer at Dar Al Hekma University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. She holds an MA in Photography from the University of the Arts London and was the recipient of the residency award by the Mairie de Paris and Cites International des Arts- Residency in 2006. Enjoy.

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Zaynab
Wow, you live in Saudi Arabia? That certainly pops out instantly. From the scratch, what misconceptions do you think I need to get out of my mind immediately?

Yeahhh I have lived here for over 9 years now. I would say the prevalent misconception people have of women in KSA as a direct result of the Western media’s agenda to perpetuate this laughable perception would be the one to disregard. Saudi women don’t hide behind a veil – they don’t stay hidden away – they hold positions of power in both the private and public sectors. Sure we all have to wear an abaya (it can be any colour and design you want it to be and we spend ridiculous amounts of money on them.   

Which one, particularly, would I be shocked to find untrue or unsubstantiated?

That all Saudis are loaded. That you have to walk around in black and covered. No, women absolutely do not have to wear hijab, the head covering.

But do you have to walk with a male relative before you walk in public?

I wish you could have seen my face when I read this question. Bwahahahahahaa. Oh mannn I forgot that was yet another big Saudi myth. Noooooo you do not have to go out in the company of a male. That is so far removed from the truth I go out with my friends all the time. I guess the fact that women are not allowed to drive (yeahh boo hiss big time to that) we always need a driver but they just get in the car and go where we ask them to take us. Exactly like women do in Lagos all the time – we have drivers and there’s always Uber, husbands, brothers we don’t care who just as long as they well.. just drive us wherever! Be it to work, uni, restaurants, the beach, friends’, the malls… sure I would like the choice to drive myself but actually I quite like not driving. But no I don’t need to be “in the company” of a man in the capacity of a chaperone.

How did you find yourself in the Middle East, anyway? What do you do there, and how has it been?

My husband studied Arabic and his job brought us here all those years ago. I started working at a very progressive all women’s private university where I teach the photography courses in the school of design and architecture. Basically the introduction to darkroom (yes!), alternative processes, and the digital studio photography courses.

The British school that my kids attend is exceptionally good – I live on an expatriate compound with families from all corners of the world. Cost of living is low and for a wild weekend Dubai and Abu Dhabi are a couple of hours away.

I don’t really do things I don’t like to do so I will say it’s been great. Of course it’s not for everybody – you know, women still have to abide by rules of modesty in public and for some this can feel restrictive. I mean you can’t walk around Jeddah in shorts and a bikini. I have many close Saudi friends and met more people from different nationalities than I ever did living in the UK or Nigeria. My kids don’t know anything else so to them for now at least this is home.

I have many close Saudi friends.

What languages do you speak at home, especially to the children? Have you ever worried about them losing access to their mother tongue as a result of this distance?

I speak Yorùbá fluently but sadly only speak in English to my kids at home and they pick up Arabic from school and our neighbours on the compound.

I think the fact that my husband doesn’t speak Yorùbá (German/British)  compounds it.

Do I feel sad that they don’t speak or at least understand it? yes big time. But we all know about language and kids – I think one or two long summers in Nigeria over the next few years and they will pick it up. To be fair I didn’t really speak a lot of Yorùbá growing up I just found myself in my late teens realising that I was completely fluent. But saying that, I was living in Nigeria until my mid teens and was exposed to the language.

As a photographer, what is your biggest challenge working in such a conservative country where the public (I’d mistakenly written “pubic” at first) gaze is not always a welcome presence?

Lol. Pubic eh?

Challenges are twofold. As a photographer – the biggest challenge for me like most working mums is juggling work and family commitments, this compounds the dilemma of me actually finding time to do my own personal (creative) work. Language used to be a major barrier but not so much anymore. I am not really a street photographer so I guess it’s easier for me. The way that I now approach my work is more about long term projects that can unfold without being intrusive.

As a teacher, I have students that produce really compelling highly personal work but due to the conservative nature of their backgrounds many of my students’ work is usually for my eyes only – for assessment. They do not even go in my course files. This can be frustrating at times when I want to share the work with colleagues or organisations that would be truly moved by their originality and novelty.

I’ve taken a look at your site but couldn’t understand what you were doing? Tell me more about the Hekayat Ashara photography project .

So after years of living in Jeddah I went with some students to an area called Al Ruwais district, which is known for its multicultural multi ethnic residents. It is also has a notorious reputation as a no go area. Rumours of drugs, prostitution etc are rife and in the government’s sight for “rejuvenation”. Inhabitants of Ruwais make up the lowest income earners in Jeddah.

So I launched a community based project called Hekayat Ashara (The story of 10) where 10 women of different nationalities/backgrounds living or working in Ruwais were given photography workshops in order to document the area before the proposed changes. We met every week and paired each Ruwais lady with one student from the school of design and architecture over a 1-year period. The project was hugely successful with proposals for a second edition in the Holy City of Makkah.

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Zaynab is third from the right

Your bio says you’ve worked for British Airways, The Nigerian Conservation Foundation, and Guaranty Trust Bank. Can I ask what you did for them as a photographer?

British Airways were sponsors of an “Expedition of Goodwill” to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Richard Lander and to celebrate the Lander brothers’ in November 2004 to retrace their historic river journey. I was hired to follow and document their experience.

Guaranty Trust Bank sponsored and renovated a school called St. George in Ikoyi and I was hired to make some images of the school and the kids during this transition period for their annual reports and other in house purposes.

Hired by the NCF to travel to Gashaka Gumti national park – photographs for promotional materials.

As a photographer, what do you look for in a scene? What kind of environment most inspires you to reach out for the camera?

As you rightly asked about the notion of the gaze living in a country where I don’t really have the opportunity to go around pointing the camera around I tend to plan my shoots in advance. I don’t stumble upon a scene – I always somehow have to orchestrate what unfolds in front of my lens. This means that I spend more time planning props, location and especially lighting. Of course the downside is that I  miss out on the spontaneous potential of the medium. This is what I am most excited and nervous about the road trip – the fact that I have to produce work on the go. Looking for these elements that I usually meticulously plan every day on the go in a new city everyday.

What has been your most memorable experience as a woman working, either in the UK, in Nigeria, and in the Middle East, either in comparison or in contrast?

My fondest memories or experiences as a female photographer I would say was definitely during the active years of the collective Depth of field. Working in a group it always felt like a welcome change of perspective to get the input of the guys (Uche, Zulu, Emeka and Amaize).

I just go about my work though usually – my gender is inconsequential most days.

What is your favourite work and why?

I like different work for different reasons – some for what I learned about myself, some for what I learned about others. I am very fond of the work that I did with the very popular traffic warden opposite Law School years ago.

How did you get into the Invisible Borders Project?

I have known Emeka for years – we are members of the collective Depth of Field and the worked together on projects in the past. I had been planning to join the IB road trip for a few years now but work commitments never made it quite possible. Luckily this year it’s worked out and I am really excited to be a part of the borders within edition.

What is your biggest expectation for the trip?

My biggest expectation is producing meaningful work as being a university lecturer, great emphasis is placed on research. and I am hopeful that collaboration especially with the writers will support and help me with my writing to support the research-based body of work I expect to produce.

What is your biggest fear?

I have a few worries mostly related to hygiene, staying clean, but for sure my biggest fear on the road trip is falling sick. My kids are worried about mama getting taken by those bad guys!

If I interview you again at the end of the trip, what do you expect would have changed either in your appreciation of travel, your craft, or Nigeria in general?

Honestly I’m not too sure. But sure I won’t be the same Zaynab from 45 days before. I love travel and I am not naive as to think that travelling is easy. I know that we must rely heavily on the mercy of our creator to bless us as we pull into every new city. I pray that we will encounter people that will be merciful and kind to us – people that will help us on this seemingly crazy adventure.

I hope more than anything that people will see the value of such projects and be driven to support more readily in the future.

Thank you for talking to me.

Anytime. Thank you!

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Photos from Invisible Borders.

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173 Authors vie for the 2016 Nigerian Prize for Literature

According to the press release from NLNG today, there are 173 entries for the 2016 NLNG Nigerian Prize for Literature. This year’s edition is focused on the Prose Fiction genre. More from the press release:

NLNG-Prize-for-Literature--330x218“The entries were handed over to the panel of judges by the Emeritus Professor Ayo Banjo Advisory Board for Literature. Other members of the Advisory Board are Emeritus Professor Ben Elugbe and Professor Jerry Agada. The panel of judges is led by Professor Dan Izevbaye, a professor of English Language, at Bowen University, Iwo. Other members of the panel of judges include Professor Asabe Usman Kabir, Professor of Oral and African Literatures at Usmanu Danfodiyo University Sokoto and Professor Isidore Diala, a professor of African Literature at Imo State University, Owerri and first winner of the award for Literary Criticism. The International Consultant is Professor Kojo Senanu, Professor of English at the University of Legon.

The last winner of the literature prize in the Prose Fiction category was Chika Unigwe in 2012 who beat 213 authors to the prize with her book On Black Sisters’ Street.

This year’s award for prose fiction will run concurrently with NLNG’s prize for literary criticism for which only two entries were received. Introduced in 2013, the literary criticism prize is a yearly award and carries a monetary value of N1 million.”

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A Chapter in Literary Wonderlands

literary wonderlandsI’m thrilled to announce that I am contributing a chapter to the book “Literary Wonderlands”, a book that “seeks to bring together the greatest ‘created’ worlds of literature in one beautifully designed and illustrated single volume.” More about the project here

The book is being edited by Laura Miller (co-founder of Salon.com), and contributors include Adam Roberts, Julia Eccleshare, Lev Grossman and Lisa Tuttle. It will be published by Elwin Street Productions by November 1. You can pre-order it here.

My chapter is on Nnedi Okorafor’s “Lagoon“, the only African novel in the list of 100. The novel examines a post-apocalyptic Lagos during and after an alien invasion. Here’s a summary from Amazon:

“After word gets out on the Internet that aliens have landed in the waters outside of the world’s fifth most populous city, chaos ensues. Soon the military, religious leaders, thieves, and crackpots are trying to control the message on YouTube and on the streets. Meanwhile, the earth’s political superpowers are considering a preemptive nuclear launch to eradicate the intruders. All that stands between seventeen million anarchic residents and death is an alien ambassador, a biologist, a rapper, a soldier, and a myth that may be the size of a giant spider, or a god revealed.”

 I interviewed the author about it a while ago for The Guardian here.

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Invisible Borders: Interview with Emmanuel Iduma and Emeka Okereke

By now you must have heard about the Invisible Borders TransAfrican project and a proposed trip around Nigeria starting from May 12. I catch up with the two leading members of the trip for a quick chat. Emeka Okereke (EO) is a filmmaker and photographer while Emmanuel Iduma (EI) is a novelist and art critic. They discuss what we should expect from the trip, their motivation, how we can help, among others. Enjoy.

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Let me start this way: How did your paths and intentions cross, the two of you? One of you is a photographer and the other is a writer. How did you meet and how did the relationship bring you here?

cnnphotoEI: I met Emeka first in 2009, in the company of Qudus Onikeku, Sokari Ekine, Dominique Malaquais, Tèmítáyọ̀ Amogunlà, and others. A workshop on contemporary African dance criticism—actually that was my introduction to art writing. It was a quick meeting. But in 2011 I wrote to him again, asking if I could participate in the road trip of that year. He thought I was a good fit. Our relationship has been part-friendship and part-collaboration. Emeka is very important to my trajectory as a writer. I credit him as one of those who is teaching me to see.

EO: In addition to Emmanuel’s answer above, I would add that from the onset, I have always seen in Emmanuel the future of critical writing from a Nigerian and African perspective. His trajectory (and indeed the man himself) is representative of this needful hybrid between the literary world and that of art criticism. Over the years, we have learnt to tap into our affinity for understanding imagery and its possibilities, our quest to find a new voice inspired by our everyday realities. On the other hand, he reminds me of my vigour when I was younger – with the added incentive of his much calmer constructive temperament.

Let me ask you, Emeka, as the founder of the project. What started this whole idea of traveling around the world and documenting stories? How long did it take to mature from the early stages to where it is now?

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Emeka Okereke

EO: I have always been of the belief that there is no life without movement – there you go, my personal philosophy summarized in one sentence. Growing up, I lived a life whereby the only way I could find solace was in the conviction that life is full of unimaginable possibilities, that it is not as rigid as a singular story. The best thing that happened to me therefore was to become an artist, with the only limitation to my self-expression being my medium, my thinking and the art world! Invisible Borders came therefore out of that belief in perpetual movement to escape stagnation.

The more I delve into the history of Africa, the more I realise it’s a history of an incredibly mobile energetic people stifled by the advent of imperialism and Occidental hegemony. After so many centuries of oppression and suppression, of defining Africa only by her limitations, such projects as Invisible Borders propose that we readjust our mindset and perspective to that which breaks away from an enclosed definition of who we are, and harness the positive attributes of our diversity to create hybrids of multifarious forms of existence. This is what we mean when we say Africa is the future. But how do we attain this future when we are so divided amongst ourselves? Therefore the work begins with a Trans-African exchange.

Travelling, especially around Africa, has presented a surprising amount of challenges. You’d be surprised at how more expensive it is to go to Kenya than to go to London. Travelling by road is even worse, with visible borders, bureaucracies, security challenges, and all. How do you hope that this project changes things for the better?

EO: The most urgent need beyond how expensive or cumbersome it is to travel is to get people to imbibe the perception and attitude of Trans-African exchange. I believe that with this as the foremost, the challenges will be met. We are basically talking economics here with most of the practical and logistical concerns. We have in the past emphasised on the actual infrastructure – the Trans-African highways, the indispensability of road as a tangible conduit and facilitator of this exchange much the same as the artistic interventions. Over the past year, we have seen how our project has inspired many other Road Trip endeavours across Africa. Just recently, a group of Nigerian artists took to the Road, from Lagos to Dakar sponsored by the Goethe Institut Nigeria. Besides it being glaring that this project was modelled after the Invisible Borders project, it is a route we have travelled in 2010. Such projects and many more is an indication that our work is impactful. We shall keep at it for a very long time, and until we have inspired the many agents of change – the artists, cultural administrators, and individuals – in the course of this century.

I have known you, Emmanuel, as a fiction writer and publisher (and later as an art critic). But somewhere in-between, you became a travel writer as well. Could you enlighten me about the transition (or the epiphany, as the case may be)?

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Emmanuel Iduma

EI: There is a rich twilight between those forms, at least for me. A lot of my work depends on restlessness, or what I fancifully call peripeteia. The idea for me is to constantly think of what’s possible in my writing, and to put the essayist in me in conversation with the novelist in me. I have been thinking a lot about two statements. One is what Barthes wrote: “A critic should be a novelist in disguise.” The other is something one of my heroes said to me: “Crystallize your vision as a writer in such a way that it becomes ennobling and edifying for others.”

I like the liminality you propose. “Somewhere in-between, I became a travel writer.” But to be honest, I have not yet considered the idea of working in mainstream travel writing. I haven’t been able to match my ambition for my travel recollections with the form of more traditional travel writing. In my recent writing, especially after the road trips, the way I remember the journeys is not linear. There’s no narrative arc. It’s like a dog sniffing a field. Dogs don’t follow a straight line. They follow their noses and go all over the place.

So, yeah, the transition isn’t complete.

Travel is a fascinating enterprise. I remember talking to you about joining one of these trips (I believe it was the one of two or three years ago). But travel is also quite a physically and mentally tasking experience, needing 100% of attention and dedication. What interests you, both, in this experience, and what have you gained the most from past editions?

EI: After each trip I usually swear I won’t participate in the next one. My friends are quick to mock how easily I renege on that promise. I want to constantly go afield. The idea of being a stranger in a place, scarcely having the audacity and permission to relate with locals, fascinates me. I mean, much of our travels have been in Francophone Africa. And I can’t make a sentence in French, or Wolof, or Bambara, or Moghrebi Arabic. What does that incommunicability allow? What does it eclipse? This is why I haven’t been able to say no to traveling more with Invisible Borders. The other reason: I can’t separate art from art-making. I can’t distinguish what the head imagines and what the hand does. To see real bodies struggle with art-making, as a writer interested in images, is a gift.  

Invisiblebordersparticipants2014EO: I think for me, it’s about the notion of constantly inhabiting a space of transition, the Middle Ground like Chinua Achebe called it. He went on to explain this as “where everything is allowed to play a role in coexistence, and whatever cannot survive this space is expunged by the same process by which they became a part of it. It is the process by which foreground and background comes into being; it is the core of social formation”. The Invisible Borders is exactly this space or distance of transition sandwiched between preconceived notions and freshly acquired perceptions, between mystery and meaning. Over the past five years we have constantly inhabited this space, and by that generated reflections which to my belief are useful aberrations to the prevalent African narrative. It is a highly charged creative space – I think this is what keeps pulling us back to it.

Specifically, which ones of the earlier editions of this road trip delighted you the most and why?

EI: My first, in late 2011. There was something valuable about my naiveté, and the fact that a lot of the clarity I’m now gaining about my work wasn’t available to me then. Also, I was traveling out of Nigeria for the first time.

EO: The first impression is always the best! So I will say the 2009 edition. But in the way of valuable experience, I will go for the 2014 from Lagos to Sarajevo. After that trip, I feel invincible, there is really nothing we can’t do!

How did you choose the participants in this edition, and what do you look forward to the most?

EO: It has always been the norm since 2011 to make an open call. But this year, we thought it wise and more effective to go by internal research and handpick certain artists whose work we have been following. We always try to experiment with the different kind of artists we bring on board. This year we have gone with a lot of young and budding artists because we try to position the reflections around the Nigerian Road Trip in the frame of the present/future generation, it is really a project that looks at the future. But again, we are focusing very much on the history of how Nigeria came to be. You understand that we cannot talk about the future of Nigeria in detachment from history because history is the ground under our feet.

If I speak with any of the currently selected participants, what do you think would be their responses to a question like “What is your biggest fear about this trip?”

invisibleEO: It’s simple: going to the North from the South. And this fear has a history. Today, it’s due to the violence from Boko Haram, but it all began with that Amalgamation in 1914. Since this time caution has always preceded the South-North transitioning. But we are Nigerians, and off we go!

The trip, the poster says, will go from Lagos to the South-South, then northwards through the heart of one of the most dangerous parts of Nigeria in 2016. What are you hoping to find out, and how do you think the findings would impact on the public?

EI: How about we investigate what makes the northeast dangerous? The lives inscribed within this danger, what do they look like? I am constantly aware that Nigeria as we know it, from the time of its naming until now, is constructed. So we know as little as we have been told. This is not to say Maiduguri is a safe place, or Enugu for that matter. For this trip we’re outdistancing the stereotypes we’ve been given about northern Nigeria—especially since a number of us have lived mainly in the south. A work of art brings closer what has been kept afar. I am hoping that in this trip we can add our voice to the chorus of all that is sublime and nuanced, and even paradoxical, about Nigeria. There’s a great sentence in Maxine Hong Kingston’s The Woman Warrior, now framed in my mind: “I learned to make my mind large, as the universe is large, so that there is room for paradoxes.”

EO: Emmanuel nailed it. there couldn’t have been a more perfect answer!

Emeka, as a photographer, and Emmanuel as an art critic and writer, what do you, individually, look for when you walk through a crowd of people, particularly in a place you’ve never been before? What images gives you the most feeling of ‘this is highly significant!”

aaEI: I’ll go back to the image of a dog sniffing a field, which is a metaphor Tacita Dean uses in relation to her research method, quoting the great Sebald. “You allow yourself to be interrupted on your journey and led elsewhere by whatever you encounter,” she said. I believe in this very much. If an art critic must be as intelligent as possible, that intelligence is ultimately the possibility of testing the fitness of my instincts. I learn a lot from the language of improvisational dancers, especially those who allow the energy of an audience shape their movement on stage. This is a roundabout way of saying I have a vague sense of what to look for when I walk in a crowd as a stranger. My goal is to forget my assumptions. To listen.

EO: The image is always a precipitate of a lived experience. Part of preparing myself for the trip is to divorce myself of any idea of an image that I would like to have. There is something funny about images: there is a thin line between an image which limits perception and that which liberates it. Rather than talk of an image, I would reflect on the kind of encounters we hope to make. I look forward to meeting Nigerians from all walks of life – from the farmer, the mechanic, the trader in the market to the business tycoon, politician, advocate of human rights, nurses, doctors, you name them –  listen to their unique stories, share their moments with them, learn from our exchange. It is only after then that the camera comes in, to bear witness or emblemize the occasion.

One more question that i’ve always wanted to ask photographers, Emeka, what actually happens to all the images you take over many years? I sometimes look into my records and wonder what I should do with photos taken which at some point meant a lot to me. I assume that many of them are shown at exhibitions. Do you ever duel with yourself as to which to keep and which not to, which to exhibit and which not to? What helps you in making those decisions?

EO: We are all asking ourselves the same question. Especially at a time of digital proliferation of images. Selection of images is part of the daunting process of image making, so it comes with the profession. Beyond that, the biggest challenge at the moment is figuring out methods of archiving. I have always said that for every click we make in and about the African continent, history is made. So while we meticulously chose images for exhibitions and presentations after the road trip project, we throw nothing into the bin. We always thinking of posterity, some of these images need to age – like fine wine.

How can the public help this trip?

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EO: We have reached out to the public, asking for their contribution in the way of knowledge about the historic and contemporary narratives of the states, cities and regions we are scheduled to visit. We really want this project to be about profound encounters, and doing so through assistance of well-meaning indigenes of these places is the most productive way to go.

What should we look forward to at the end?

EI: A solid amount of images, film, and writing. A body of work from each of the participants. Because there’s so much to make sense of in Nigeria, I don’t think there will be an excess of responses.

 

End

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Still to come: interview with other participants in the road trip.

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Photos from OkayAfrica, CNN, and Google Images.

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