Bicycle Decoration and Everyday Aesthetics in Northern NigeriaBicycle Decoration and Everyday Aesthetics in Northern Nigeria

I really respect his work anyway and his PhD thesis saved me lots of time skimming through ABU’s archives myself but I love him even more for this quote, which Chika Okeke unearthed and published on his blog:

It is extremely difficult to obtain an object without at least resorting so some kind of violence: I believe half your museum is stolen.

It’s from a letter by the German traveler Richard Kandt[1] to Felix Luschan[2] at the Ethnological Museum in Berlin and dates to the same year British troops looted the palace of the Oba in Benin. The Ethnological Museum in Berlin, incidentally, holds one of the largest collections of the artifacts thus ‘acquired.’ Take it as a contribution to current debates about redistribution.

Oh, and if you happen to be in Lagos – don’t miss your chance to meet the man himself. Chika Okeke is speaking at CCA Lagos this weekend. More details here.

[1] Wikipedia only offers a German language entry

[2] In German language again, here’s more on the former Assistant Director of the museum.


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