Ten years ago Emeka Ogboh became known in the international art world as “the Lagos sound artist”. It opened doors (Documenta, Venice Biennal, Tate to name but a few) but certainly didn’t limit him to sound. With his background in graphic design, he understands labels and advertising. In fact, he uses them. “Who is afraid of black”, borrowed from the schoolyard game, is the tagline for his latest inquiry about what it means to be black in Europe. And the best to talk about migration and citizenship is through food – and beer. Sufferhead, named after the Fela Kuti song, is a black craft beer. It subverts the German Reinheitsgebot, which dictates what constitutes “pure beer”. Apart from chilli as one of the key ingredients, the Sufferhead recipe changes depending on where it is brewed, on who and what Emeka finds there. The result, like migration, is always bittersweet. The Sufferhead project captures these different aspects and not just through beer brewing. If Found Please Return To Lagos, Emeka’s solo show at the Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden Baden (2018), elegantly and humorously, tells of the good, the bad and the ugly of migration. With homes in Lagos, Berlin and Enugu and perpetual wanderings in-between, Emeka knows how to make a place home, even if for a day: You curate your food and music and you are fine actually.
Emeka’s 14thMay Homepage (that’s his birthday:)
If Found Please Return To Lagos at Kunsthalle Baden Baden