By Bruce Onobrakpeya
CHIEF Timothy Adebanjo Fasuyi, a founding father of the Society of Nigerian Artists (SNA), was a visionary. His role in nurturing the SNA was pivotal, fostering a community where artists could collaborate and flourish. His leadership was not just administrative; it was inspirational, empowering artists to explore and express, shaping a vibrant artistic culture in Nigeria.
During the Nigerian Civil War, Fasuyi’s role was profound. He was among the select artists whose works toured globally, not merely as exhibitions but as emissaries of Nigerian creativity and resilience. These exhibitions served as powerful counter-narratives to the prevailing stories of conflict, showcasing our rich cultural heritage and artistic prowess.
As an art adviser to the Nigerian Government, Fasuyi wielded his expertise to shape national art policies and programmes, championing art education and cultural development. His tenure marked a significant elevation of art in our national consciousness.
Late Pa Timothy Adebanjo Fasuyi
Fasuyi’s artistic brilliance was most vivid in his mixed media works. He captured the essence of Nigerian life with a blend of surrealism and symbolism, integrating various mediums and styles seamlessly. His works were not just visually arresting; they were narratively compelling, deeply connected to our culture and traditions.
Chief Fasuyi’s legacy continues to illuminate the art world. His unwavering commitment to nurturing emerging talents and elevating Nigerian art, both locally and globally has left a profound impact. Through initiatives like the Fasuyi Prize at Ahmadu Bello University and the establishment of The Tim and Carol Art Gallery by his son, his lifelong dedication to art endures, serving as an enduring symbol of his passion and influence in the artistic community.
Through his works, leadership in the SNA, international exhibitions, and advisory roles, Fasuyi’s influence remains a cornerstone in the narrative of Nigerian art. He inspired a future where creativity, community, and cultural pride are celebrated, leaving a legacy that continues to inspire and guide future generations.
In tribute to Chief Timothy Adebanjo Fasuyi, I salute a life richly lived in the service of art, education, and culture. His journey was a testament to the transformative power of art in shaping society and legacy. His spirit lives on in every brushstroke, in every young artist he inspired, and in every corner of the Nigerian art world he helped shape.
* Onobrakpeya, a Nigeria National Order of Merit (NNOM), and UNESCO Human Living Treasure, wrote in this glowing tribute for the recently deceased Fasuyi from Lagos