By Elizabeth Uwandu
Students from six schools in Lagos who designed the Flying Flotilla at the Falomo bridge are set to represent Nigeria at Thames Festival tagged, “ Rivers of the world, “ in London later this year.
Speaking at the official display of the art works under the remodeled Falomo Bridge that took place on Children’s day, May 27, Polly Alakija, chairperson, Arts and Culture Lagos State, supervisor of the project, said the event which was sponsored by Lagos state government as part of the Lagos @ 50 celebrations will afford the state the opportunity to showcase its creativity as one of the emerging tourist destinations in the world.
The students from Akande Dahunsi Junior Memorial School, Grace High School Gbagada, Boys’ Junior Academy, New Hall International School Lekki, Lagos State Junior Model College and Daregoes Private School Ipaja worked with professional artists. They explored their environmental, social, ecological and cultural aspects of their river and communities to create immense artworks inspired by their findings which help share their stories, ideas and hopes.
Expressing delight over the creative work, Alakija said, “ The Flying flotilla has recently been selected to represent Nigeria as part of the Rivers of the world art exhibition which is to be showcased at the prestigious Thames festival. The “Rivers of the World” is the Thames Festival Trust’s flagship art and educational project delivered in partnership with the British Council. It is an international arts education programme that works with schools across the world for young people aged 12 to 14 to help inspire, educate and connect them to their local river and waterfront;
“The Canoes will be displayed under the Falomo Bridge till August after which, they will be displayed on the South Bank of the River Thames in London just outside the Tate modern gallery for three weeks as part of Totally Thames festival.
The arts lover who thanked sponsors like MTN Nigeria, Dangote Group and Kansai Plascon for making the event a success noted that the creative industry, one of the potentials to sustain the Nigeria economy have remained untapped called other state governments to emulate Lagos into giving the industry a boost.
Ahmed Mohammed one of the Directors, British Council Nigeria said Council will continue to create opportunities and build trust internationally and with local communities through school projects.