Bust portraits have been an integral part of Nigerian art since the Ancient arts of Nok, Ife, and Benin. Some of the sculptors portrayed realism, a skill that Westerners deemed impossible by African Artists. Sculptor and painter, Abayomi Adebayo Barber (b.1928) felt that artists of his time produced Art that supported this Western misconception. He, therefore, positioned his artistic ideologies against Western perceptions of African authenticity as ‘primitive’, ‘crude’, and ‘unskilled’. Consequently, Abayomi’s works were centered on naturalism and surrealism. One of the sculptures representing his Artistry in the Yemisi Shyllon Museum of Art is Ali Maigoro, the bust of a humored aging man which epitomizes the potency of his ideology which birthed the Abayomi Barber School of Art.
To know more about Abayomi Barber and his work ‘Ali Maigoro”, click on the link below to download the information sheet.