By Godwin Okondo
PURPLE, Nigeria’s breakthrough real estate investment platform, has unveiled PurpleArt, a new initiative to support Nigeria’s growing art scene. The initiative was inaugurated at a new exhibition and site-specific work at PurpleMaryland by Nigeria’s visual artist, Dotun Popoola. PurpleArt demonstrates the group’s ambition to collaborate with emerging artists, curators, galleries, and cultural institutions that represent the creative spirit of the country.
PurpleArt creates inclusive opportunities for the public to engage with artistic practices experimenting with diverse mediums and subject matters within and beyond Nigeria. The new programme will highlight young, emerging, established, and iconic artists whose works define the times.
Popoola’s The Purple Wolf melds the artist’s signature hyper-realistic metal work with Purple’s trademark hue: the colour purple. The literal and figurative Purple Wolf examines several themes to convey animism and the dynamics of survival. Striking connections between human, animal and augmented life, a bionic wolf reveals the challenges faced by natural life amidst an environment of constant change.
Initiated by Laide Agboola, PurpleArt seeks to promote African philanthropy and domestic support of artistic excellence, galleries, museums, and professional networks that reimagine creative activities and support the emergence of contemporary African art as a financial asset class.
The Chief Executive Officer of Purple, Agboola, said: “Purple is well known for its real estate and lifestyle experiences presented in Lagos – creativity is a vital part of our identity. With the launch of PurpleArt, we look forward to extending our support to artistic programmes for Nigerian artists and showcasing the inspirational work of creatives living and working today. Collaborating with Dotun has been a pleasure, and we look forward to establishing new and long-term relationships with artists and creatives to cultivate new ideas, solutions and debate.”
Popoola, born in Nigeria in 1981, is a synergetic metal sculptor who has carved a niche through hyper-realistic monumental metal sculptures. He holds a National Diploma in painting and General Arts from Auchi Polytechnic, Auchi, Edo State, and completed degrees in Fine and Applied Arts with a specialisation in sculpture and painting at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
After training and studio residences across the U.S., Popoola won the Director General’s Award of Best Artist of the Year in the maiden NYSC arts competition in 2009 and has featured at the International Art Fair ‘ARTX Lagos,’ and represented Nigeria in landmark exhibitions in the Middle East, South Asia, and participated in several group exhibitions, and solo shows.
As a facilitator of art workshops for students, professionals, NGOs, healthcare institutions, orphanages, rehabilitation centres, and schools in Nigeria and across the globe, his monumental sculptures and large murals inspire experimentation and upend of natural, built, and social worlds.
Purple is Nigeria’s breakthrough real estate platform at the forefront of a real estate revolution. With investments in the development, management, and acquisition of superior multi-purpose properties and infrastructure across a wide range of sectors to democratise access to real estate ownership and investment, Purple is breaking down the barriers that prevent investors from the gains of appreciating assets. Purple started operations in 2014 and is responsible for developing the Maryland Mall, a Grade-A mixed-use centre that also boasts of the largest outdoor LED screen in West Africa.
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