Writings of the general word's body

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Record N13.5m for Ben Enwonwu at Lagos auction

Was at the auction preview exhibition at Terra Kulture auction on Tuesday, May 3 and also in the hall was none other than Jossy Ajiboye (above), legendary cartoonist of Daily Times fame. Bolanle Austen-Peters introduced us. It was a lovely afternoon. I'd earlier been to Quintessence to catch the preview of Alimi Adewale's forthcoming exhibition, 'Sublime'. Had an interesting chat with the artist and Quintessence curator Moses Ohiomokhare. Then at Terra Kulture, spent some time viewing the lots and chatting with Mr. Ajiboye, who can hold a conversation.

He was not at last night's auction, where the big story was this ink on paper work, 'Untitled' (1980) from the Dance Series by Ben Enwonwu, which broke its estimate of 8 to 9 million naira to be sold to a Nigerian female bidder for N13.5millon, shattering the previous Lagos record for a Bruce Onobrakepa piece.

The Enwonwu bidder kept her cool as the hall applauded. By my count, she carted off another 8 pieces by the end of bidding, including the following:

  • 'Dance to Enchanting Song Panel IX' by Bruce Onobrakpeya (N800,000).

  • 'Face to Face' by Damola Adepoju (N200,000).

  • 'Emperor Sundiatta's Daughter' by Moyo Ogundipe (N800,000).

  • 'Dancer' by Nyemike Onwuka (N650.000).

  • 'Divine Visitation' by Kolade Oshinowo (N2.2m).

  • 'Texture Textile Feeling' by Ndidi Dike (N1m).

  • 'Olumo Rock Abeokuta' by Ufuoma Onobrakpeya (N350.000).

Among her haul, Jossy Ajiboye's 'Arugba', sold for N350,000. Prices will be adjusted upwards slightly when the Buyer's premium is added by the auction complany.

Jossy Ajiboye photo by MW.

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