While the commercial city of Lagos, South West Nigeria is being propped as one of the fastest growing cities in the world out of Africa, it houses what arts and culture experts describe as the largest art gallery in West Africa named as the Nike Art Gallery. Taking a detour to this gallery already sounds exciting as its name implies, isn't it?. So please come long and let's explore.
Nike Art Gallery is an art gallery in Lagos privately owned by Chief Nike Davies-Okundaye, a Nigerian batik and textile designer. It features the most amazing and original African art collections from some of the renowned artists in West Africa. Located in the suburb of Lagos, Lekki area, the Nike Art Gallery is akin to a maze once you leave the first floor, which beyond sculpture and paintings includes a visitor’s desk and several couches arranged for guests’ comfort, with wine on offer. The next four floors are covered nearly floor-to-ceiling in canvases of all sizes, interspersed with sculptures, beading work, and textile art. Visitors won’t find a section where a single artist is featured solo, rather works are spread across the gallery no matter the prominence of the artist—Davis-Okundaye included. The higher you ascend, the less the air conditioning reaches, so be warned as you access the top rooms, which can be especially stuffy when electricity is down.
Popular travel tour blog, TripAdvisor describes the Nike Art Gallery as one of Nigeria's hidden treasures and ranks it as the number 1 place to visit when you are in Nigeria. You can also find the gallery outside of Lagos in states like Osun (Osogbo), Kogi (Ogidi) and Abuja, all of which you can visit with the tour group attached to the gallery known as the 'Nike Tours'. The tours offer overnight accommodation at her guesthouses, and partake in creating traditional African crafts such as adire, batik, indigo, beadwork, painting, or carving.
Tour guides are highly recommended to learn about the art on display, and generally operate on a tip basis. Group tours, however, are priced depending on size. Unlike many museums, all the artwork you see is for sale at price points. The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day except Sunday, when hours are 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
At Power of Africa, arts and culture is central to our objective of projecting Africa to the rest of the world in a different light. We believe that having a shared African experience can not in any way be isolated from embracing African art and culture since culture is basically a way of life of a particular group of people.