On July 27, 2018, the national executive of the SNA paid a courtesy visit to Prof Yemi Osinbajo SAN, GCON, the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to discuss partnership initiatives to rebuild our nation for not only the present but also for future generations of Nigerians. Areas outlined include :
- A structure befitting for the National Gallery of Art, located in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja to house and promote the national collection of artworks.
- A regular art biennial or triennial such as Dakar Biennial in Senegal; Bamako Photo Festival in Mali; FESPACO in Burkina Faso; and Black Heritage Festival ‘Akwaba’ in Ghana.
- An artists’ village, complete with studios and technological hubs to not only facilitate the production and dissemination of the visual arts but to employ art and design to dream of a better future for all Nigerians; a future of eco-cities, alternative models of democracy, domestic robots, smart appliances and self- driving cars.
- The appointment of artists and art professionals to the headship of federal cultural agencies tasked with the promotion of the visual arts.
- A National Endowment Fund for the Visual Arts, established in collaboration with the Society of Nigerian Artists.
- The embellishment of public buildings and spaces with artworks.
- Artists’ royalties on the resale of artworks in Nigeria.
- Tax rebates for corporate organisations to facilitate the consumption of artworks
- The establishment of a Presidential Art Advisory Committee.
- The establishment of a committee in collaboration with the Society of Nigerian Artists, to work with relevant federal authorities in overseeing the export of artworks. Presently, the National Commission for Museums and Monuments wrongly charges on export permits for contemporary works of art.
These initiatives will improve tourism and gain foreign exchange for Nigeria, as well as foster deeper understanding and unity amongst our diverse cultures, an efficient solution for Boko Haram terrorism, which emanates from an ideology based on social and religious intolerance.
1. Investiture of the VP as Grand Patron of the SNA.
2. Appointment of a representative of the SNA on the Presidential Advisory Group on Creativity and Technology, in the Office of the Vice President.
Here, the SNA would advise the Federal Government in formulating policies to guide the; embellishment of public buildings and spaces including foreign Nigerian embassies; increased representation of artists/ art professionals on the board of federal cultural agencies; artists’ royalties on secondary sales; tax rebates for corporate organisations, to facilitate the consumption of artworks; and export charges on contemporary artworks.
The Advisory Group is part of the larger Industrial Competitiveness Advisory Council inaugurated by President Buhari in 2017, to enhance industrial policies and performance in Nigeria.
3. An endowment fund, supported by His Excellency, and driven by private sector partnership. Objectives include the establishment of a gallery of modern Nigerian art with a secretariat for the SNA, an art academy, the publishing of critical texts and the provision of grants for artists.
L-R: Hajiya Binta Garba, Asst. General Secretary; David Aigbe, Ex-Officio; Dr Chidi Nwankwo, Publicity Secretary; Dr Adam Lemu, Vice President North Central; Yemi Oladipo, Treasurer; Oliver Enwonwu, President; Tochukwu Okide, Chairman FCT Chapter; His Excellency, Vice President Prof Yemi Osinbajo SAN, GCON; Archibong Bassey, General Secretary; Mrs Grace Gekpe, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism; Bola Adalumo, Financial Secretary; Ini Brown, Master Member of the Society of the Nigerian Artists; Mrs Funebi Umondak, Legal Adviser, Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation; and Prosper Akeni, former Chairman FCT Chapter.