Art meet acts

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. as Stanbic IBTC’s promotes culture thru entertainment  
By Ifeanyi Onuoha
It is a visual art stampede that thronged diverse influential socialites and celebs to an ambience with a royal touch. Perhaps, Stanbic IBTC’s cooperate social responsibility initiative in bringing together artists, collectors, art enthusiasts, entertainers, businessmen and women to one stage, held recently at Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island could be well described as art meet acts.
If you call it culture meet business, you are not wrong because it’s absolutely a collection beyond exhibition – essence, to network, interact, socialize and discuss business using art and music as platform to wine and dine.
Promoting Africa cultural heritage is one major focus Stanbic IBTC, a member of Standard Bank Group embarked over time, and in this second edition of their annual visual art and music show, the vision is stepped with more fusion of art and entertainment which however, commands revenue and also promotes the creative industry.
According to Sola David-Borha, CEO, Stanbic IBTC, “We believe that to provide business leadership and direction, it is imperative to support all strata of society, including the creative industry. Such support, through collaborations, partnerships and sponsorships, is intended to ignite the latent talent and entrepreneurial spirit of the populace that when harnessed will move society forward.”
Earlier in her opening remark, Sola David-Borha rightly stated that you don’t need foreign exchange to create art even in recession. A comment that drew wide laughter though, but she stressed that art helps to build entrepreneurship and self reliance. “Arts and culture in, large part, define a nation’s legacy. The expression of a society’s intellect, entrepreneurial spirit and socio-economic progress is captured in its art form and cultural nuances” quoted David-Borha.
She expressed Stanbic IBTC’s unalloyed commitment in promoting Nigeria’s cultural heritage through shows like this as rightly put; “Stanbic IBTC understood early the nexus between societal growth and business success and how arts and culture help to cement the relationship. We hope to continue to show commitment to sustainable advancement by actively seeking opportunities like the Fine Arts and The Acts to support the creative industry and highlight how such collaboration can contribute to economic growth and development” David-Borha said.
This year’s theme, ‘Inspired by Nigeria’ according to David-Borha was carefully chosen to reflect both the richness of Nigerian art forms and their ability to contribute to societal purse.
The exhibition featured selected collections from two Nigerian art connoisseurs, Fola Adeola and Adedotun Sulaiman alongside works from old and contemporary artists that include J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere, Muraina Oyelami, Kainebi Osahenye, Jumoke Sanwo among others. The exhibition platform was vehemently buzzed with guests having the feel of wine while some pose for live sketches by the artists.
The pair of IK Osakioduwa and Bright Okpocha (Basket Mouth) as comperes on stage added glamour to the show. It was live music and fine comedy on the other platform featuring one of the most active performers from South Africa – ‘The Muses’, an all girls orchestra quartet using two violins, one viola and single cello at a time to hold audience spellbound with tunes after tunes.
Others include Michael Meme, up and coming R/B singer, Ifueko Ogbomo aka Lady InspiroLogos – a spoken word artiste, KennyBlaq, a finest music and word comedian and Mpho Popp, comedian from South Africa.  Among the acts of the night, KennyBlaq stole show as his blend of spoken words and music fills the hall keeping audience laughing all through his performance. Mpho Popp, a budding comedian from Soweto who made his debut in Nigeria did not disappoint as his mastery of the art was applauded.

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