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J.D. 'Okhai Ojeikere

1-5 mars 2024

“Sculptures for a Day” at the Galerie du Jour Agnès b. presents a captivating journey into the world of Nigerian photographer J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere’s artistic vision. Born in 1930 in rural Nigeria, Ojeikere’s career began during the country’s transition to independence, profoundly influencing his photographic exploration of social and cultural shifts.

The exhibition showcases Ojeikere’s seminal series, “Hairstyles,” initiated in 1968, which documents the ephemeral art of Nigerian women’s hairdressing. With nearly 1000 prints gathered from across the country, “Hairstyles” not only preserves traditional hairdressing practices but also reflects the creative richness and social structures of Nigeria.

Ojeikere’s lens transcends mere documentation, elevating hairstyles to the realm of art, celebrating their intricate patterns and sculptural dimensions.Complementing “Hairstyles” is Ojeikere’s lesser-known series, “Headdress,” which delves into the diverse array of women’s headwear in Nigeria. Initiated in the early 2000s, “Headdress” highlights the artistic skill and aesthetic beauty of fabric arrangement, capturing the essence of manual adornment.

Ojeikere’s compositional mastery, often focusing on rear-view photographs, reveals the geometric intricacies and abstract power of hairstyles. Through his lens, he invites viewers to appreciate the transient beauty of Nigerian hairdressing, transcending fashion to celebrate its sculptural essence.

“Sculptures for a Day” is not merely an exhibition; it’s a tribute to the cultural heritage and artistic ingenuity of Nigeria. Ojeikere’s discreet yet coherent visual language immortalizes these fleeting sculptures, offering viewers a profound meditation on the beauty of Nigerian hairdressing.