As the 2016 Biennale de l’art Contemporain Africain opens on May 3rd in Dakar Senegal, Nigerian artist Modupeola Fadugba is set to present the award-winning interactive game “The People’s Algorithm” to the art world again. Modupeola is one of the five artists representing Nigeria at the Dak’Art Biennale main exhibition “Rèenchantements” in Senegal.
The invitation by Dak’Art to specifically show the art game marks the first time – since 2014 when the game was presented at the National Art Competiton in Lagos and also won El Anatsui Prize for Outstanding Production – it will be presented live to an audience outside of Nigeria. “The People’s Algorithm” was created in 2014 for the National Art Competition, organized by the African Artists Foundation in Lagos and supported by Nigerian Breweries. The theme of the competition, “Interventions” inspired the creation of an art installation focused on interventions in the national education and unemployment situation in Nigeria. The game highlights challenges in the Nigerian education sector and invites players to proffer solutions as they play.
According to Modupeola, “It is perhaps a little simplistic and child-like in its approach, but the creation of the game is essentially my way of framing a complex concept artistically. I think that if we as a society wish to do things differently, we may first need to see them differently. So I’m inviting people to this big game house and asking us all to re-imagine what can possibly be done if we all play a role.”
For the biennale, Modupeola has recreated the art installation in such a way that it is suitable for use by the diverse guests attending the exhibition. In addition, she presents a video documentary alongside the installation explaining the relevance of the artwork to other education sectors across Africa. This is staged as a call to action for stakeholders in the education sectors of different countries in Africa and to create awareness that art can be used as a tool for social development on the continent.
Since emerging as the 2014 winner of El Anatsui Prize for Outstanding Production at the competition, the installation has featured on CNN’s Inside Africa and in 2015, Fadugba presented the game to education policy-makers from across the African continent at the World Bank in Washington DC. In 2016, she is happy to present this project to a broad international audience and as one of the sixty-five artists hosted in the international exhibition curated by Simon Njami for the biennale.
During the opening week of Dak’Art, Modupeola will host two OFF exhibitions that feature her most recent paintings and drawings. Nespresso will host a private reception of her work at the Nespresso Boutique and a private viewing for sponsors and invited guests will be held at the Phare des Mamelles. Modupeola’s work will remain on display at the Phare des Mamelles for the duration of Dak’Art. Her exhibitions are generously sponsored by Zircon Marine, Telinno Consulting, Nespresso, and also Dak’Art organization for her participation in Dak’Art Biennale 2016.
Read more about the artist on modupeola.com