Dubbed “Africa's biggest Culture Picnic”, LABAF is an art festival with a heavy book content and is a testament to the commitment of CORA that the only way to translate the ‘teeming’ population of Nigeria into a true human resource is to develop their mind. It is an international event with participants drawn from scholars, writers, artists and journalists from all over the world. The Lagos Book and Art Festival is an advocacy idea; we are promoting the idea of people reading books; gaining knowledge, freeing themselves from ignorance. There are reading workshops for teenagers; panel discussions on contents of selected books; cross cultural exchange between Nigerian writers and writers from elsewhere in the world; book exhibitions and sales by publishers, book sellers, embassies etc; art and craft sales and art exhibition. Our audience keeps increasing year after year. LABAF 2012 will be our 14th edition.
Co-joined with the idea of the Book and Art Festival is the Book Editors Clinic, which the Cora organizes periodically to cultivate standard in the quality of books and literary materials produced in the country and the Publishers Forum, a business meeting of stakeholders in the publishing value-chain, which has held as a pre-event of LABAF since 2010.
visit: http://www.labaf10.blogspot.com/ for information on the 2010 festival
Last year, (2011), the 13th Lagos Book & Art Festival was themed- I Vote To Read: The Book and The Voice Of The People. Through this theme, we addressed the role of literacy in developing an informed electorate which in turn contributes to the nation building process, through a series of book events, capacity building workshops, art parties and a festival play. To view 13th LABAF photos click here.
This year, the festival would hold from the 16th – 18th November 2012 at Freedom Park, Broad Street, Lagos Island with a pre-event Publishers’ Forum and Cocktail holding on the 15th. A theme has also been announced for the Festival: The Narrative of Conflict- which focuses on how the written word and the literacy it engenders interrogates the different conflicts that surround our current existence and recent past. The festival is dedicated to the veteran artist Bruce Onabrakpeya who turned 80 this year and whose work and dedication to the arts continue to be a source of inspiration to generations of Nigerians.
The Lagos Book & Art Festival, or LABAF as it’s often called, is a landmark event on the nation’s culture calendar with sprawling book displays,exhibitions, live music and drama performances and of course, nuanced literary events that take time out to dig deep into the content of books. Says Akinosho-“LABAF is self-styled as Africa’s Biggest Culture Picnic because we don’t just put together a book fair, a performance concert, a literary festival or an art expo, what we do is a healthy fusion of all four in a festival atmosphere, and for the past 14 years, the festival has become an important destination for families, literary and art enthusiasts, culture producers, children and even lovers. We have had people who came as children years ago still attending now as young adults. We have also had people who met at the festival grounds for the first time years ago, still attending as married couples. What keeps them coming back is the way the festival allows them to engage with culture in a fun atmosphere, that is why it is Africa’s Biggest Culture Picnic.”
Set to hold this year from the 16th – 18th November at Freedom Park, 1 Hospital Road, Lagos Island, LABAF will feature over 10 book events, 3 music concerts, 2 theatre shows, 11 workshops for children and 2 visual art exhibitions. There are over thirty books being discussed at the festival including Fela: This Bitch ofa Life by Carlos Moore, Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley by Timothy White. Power, Politics & Death by Segun Adeniyi, Bitter-Sweet My Life with Obasanjo by OluremiObasanjo, A Measure of Grace by Akin Mabogunje, Bomboy, by Yewande Omotosho, Voice Of America, by E. C. Osondu, Stealth Of Nations: The Global Rise Of The Informal Economy, by Robert Neuwirth, Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson, Open Graveyard by Wale Osun, Out of the Shadows by Kayode Fayemi, Roses and Bullets by AkachiAdimora Ezeigbo and Witness To Justice by Bishop Mathew HassanKukah. Because the LABAF book events usually engage with books at a deeper level beyond the star power of the authors that produce them, most sessions are usually driven by robust discussion panels, some of the writers and thinkers confirmed for these panels include: Sola Olorunyomi, Bisi Arije, Femi AkintundeJohnson, Toni Kan, Femi Aisida, Toki Mabogunje, Odili Ujubonu, Tolu Ogunlesi,Wale Ajao, Derin Ajao, Tunji Lardner, Niran Okewole, Tade Ipadeola, LayiwolaAdeniji, Eghosa Imasuen, AnwuliOjogwu, Kayode Komolafe amongst others.
But LABAF is not just about heavy book events to get you giddy with book knowledge. The Childrens’ Programme coordinated by Children And The Environment (CATE) usually draws children in their thousands and will feature loads of activities, workshops, talks and performances centered around the festival theme of The Narrative of Conflict while marking the National Creativity Day and UN Child Rights Day.
In a tightly packed performance bouquet, The Crown Troupe of Africa would be staging Zainabu Jallo’s ‘Holy Night’ while the internationally acclaimed Renegade Theatre will also be taking the stage during the course of the festival. Add to that a Jazz Concert produced by Inspiro Productions, storytelling, spoken word, music and reading sessions produced by Pulp Faction,Image & Heritage and Laipo, a return of CORA’s Great Highlife Party in the biggest Highlife Concert in a long while, all rolled into a scenic venue with a captivating history then you know why Freedom Park is the place to be from the16th – 18th November at the 14th Lagos Book& Art Festival!
* Download a comprehensive programme for LABAF 2012 here:
* Download an exhibition stand application form here: LABAF 2012_Exhibition_Stands_Form.
The 14th Lagos Book & Art Festival Programme
DEDICATED TO BRUCE ONOBRAKPEYA AT 80
Theme: Narratives of Conflict
Date: November 16 – 18, 2012
Venue: Freedom Park, Broad Street, Lagos.
MONDAY 12TH – WEDNESDAY 14TH NOVEMBER
Book Trek At Universities of Lagos, University of Ibadan and Lagos State University.
Produced by: PEN Nigeria
THURSDAY 15TH NOVEMBER,
10am – 5pm @ Goethe Institut, City Hall, Lagos
CORA Publishers’ Forum
Theme: Financing The Book Trade
Nigerian Publishers workshop the opportunities the environment offers for financing of publishing. It’s an Open Space Discussion that will lead to concrete, implementable solutions to be published as a document. Lead presentations by Muhthar Bakare and Deji Toye.
5pm – 6.30pm @ Goethe Institut, City Hall, Lagos
Publishers’ Interface with the public / Pre-festival cocktail
Farafina Books will have a conversation with Literamed Publishers on funding options they have employed in running their businesses amongst other pertinent issues.
Discussants: Otunba Lawal Solarin (Publisher, Literamed) and Muhthar Bakare (Publisher, Farafina)
MAIN FESTIVAL @ FREEDOM PARK
FRIDAY 16TH NOVEMBER
My Encounter with the book by Ali Baba
(Ace comedian mentors children on the role books have played in his life)
11am – 11.30pm
Opening performance titled: Child Abuse, by the children’s dance drama academy- Footprints of David
Official Opening / Seminar on the Festival Visual Art Exhibition
Theme: The Art of Protest: Interrupted Lives
Leading practitioners and academics discuss the challenges, compromises and energies social engagement brings to the world of the visual arts and vice – versa in a world thirsty for social change.
Organized by Jelili Atiku / Art-Africa Nigeria and Advocates for Human Rights Through Arts.
12noon – 3pm
The Festival Colloquium
Theme: Narratives of Conflict
Readings, reviews and discussions around: Open Graveyard by Wale Osun, Out of the Shadows byKayode Fayemi, Roses and Bullets by Akachi Adimora Ezeigbo and Witness To Justice by Bishop Mathew Kukah and There Was A Country, by Chinua Achebe. Moderated by Tunji Lardner, panelists include Niran Okewole, Tade Ipadeola, Laywola Adeniji and Deji Toye.
2pm – 3pm
My Life Has a Price
A panel discussion around the newly released personal memoirs of abuse victim- Tina Okpara and the theme of abuse, rape and how literature can fill the gap. Published by Amalion Publishers, the book My Life Has a Price is being introduced to the public at the 14th Lagos Book & Art Festival. Discussants include Emmanuel Iduma, Adaudo Osigwe, Dami Ajayi, Sylva Nze Ifedigbo moderated by Chris Ihidero.
Produced by Saraba Magazine.
3pm – 5pm
Joy of Reading
A public forum on the sheer joy of reading moderated by Laipo / Ayodele Olofintuade interspersed with live music performances curated by Image & Heritage / Aderemi Adegbite
5pm – 7pm
The Festival Conversation
Theme: Narratives of Conflict
· A Three way conversation featuring Bishop Mathew Kukah , Akachi Ezeigbo (author of Roses and Bullets) and Eghosa Imasuen (author of To St. Patrick). Moderated by Tolu Ogunlesi
7pm – 9pm
Jazz Night @ Freedom Park
A musical conversation between three bands- Imole Afrika, Dapo Dina & Excite Band, live in concert!
Produced by: Inspiro Productions / Ayoola Shadare
SATURDAY 17TH NOVEMBER,
10am – 11.45am
My Life Has a Price- Meet the author
Tina Okpara’s memoir, MY LIFE HAS A PRICE takes us on her 5-year journey to hell; from a loving yet poor childhood in Nigeria to the ordeal of modern day slavery in wealthy, suburban Paris. She was only 13 when celebrity footballer, Godwin Okpara and his wife Linda, lured her father into giving her up for a supposedly better life in Europe. Tina Okpara will share from that experience, especially on writing the memoir and the closure it brings.
10am – 11.45am
A Thousand Diasporas Now-1
How different are experiences of each part of the rainbow multitude from Africa in the West? Discussions around Alaa Al Aswany’s Chicago and Zakes Mda’s Cion. Discussants:Tolu Ogunlesi, Anote Ajeluorou, Derin Ajao
12noon – 1.30pm
Town Talk 1
Financial Literacy: The Facts & The Fiction.
Moderator: Toni Kan. Featured books: Stealth Of Nations: The Global Rise Of The Informal Economy, by Robert Neuwirth, Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson. Discussants: Femi Aisida, Toki Mabogunje, Odili Ujubonu
12noon – 1.30pm
Town Talk 2
A Thousand Diasporas Now-2
Featured books: Bomboy, by Yewande Omotosho and Voice Of America, by E. C. Osondu. The panel will speak around these books, but the larger theme is around the experiences of Nigerian writers in different parts of the world and how the concept of Diaspora might have morphed over time in their work and in their lives.
1.30pm – 2.30pm
Nelson Literary Series introduce two brand new books to the public.
2:30 – 4:00pm
The Festival Matinee
Holy Night, By Zainabu Jallo
Produced by: Crown Troupe of Africa (Directed by Segun Adefila)
2:30 – 4:00pm
What is the significance of the emergence of e-books and e-reading devices to the actual act of reading? A panel discussion to be facilitated by Eghosa Imasuen and Anwuli Ojogwu., Short Keynote: Kayode Komolafe
4:00pm – 6pm
The Books of 2012
We ran a poll on the top 5 books published in 2012 that should be featured at LABAF 2012. The 5 books that topped the poll will be unveiled and discussed with the audience.
Moderated by Laipo / Ayodele Olofintuade
6:00pm – 7.30pm
A performance of ‘Anatomy of a Woman’ written and directed by Wole Oguntokun and produced by Renegade Theatre
7pm – 10pm
The Festival Concert @ Freedom Park
With an amazing line-up (featuring: Sound Sultan, Yinka Davies, Koffi, Daddy Showkey, Princess, Yaw) the Ariwo Oja album launch showcases the musical works of Segun Adefila and The Crown Troupe of Africa and celebrates great art patrons / artists who have clocked landmark birthdays in 2012, led by Bruce Onabrakpeya.
Produced by The Crown Troupe of Africa in association with the Dream Arts & Design Agency.
SUNDAY 18TH NOVEMBER
12noon – 2:00pm
My Story, Our Country
Reviews and discussions of Segun Adeniyi’s Power, Politics & Death, Oluremi Obasanjo’s Bitter-Sweet My Life with Obasanjo and Akin Mabogunje’s A Measure of Grace ; focusing on how memoirs by citizens go about telling the story of a nation. Moderator: Kunle Ajibade
Discussants: Professor Mabogunje, Mr Segun Adeniyi, Mr Fred Ohwahwa,
2:00pm – 2:30pm
Presentation of An Introduction to Cultural Activism by Oba Sonuga
2:00pm – 6:00pm
Theme: The music in the book, the book in the music
The stampede will discuss the relationship between literature and music drawing loosely from the musical legacies of two legends as contained in the following books: Fela: This Bitch of a Life by Carlos Moore and Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley by Timothy White. Moderator: Sola Olorunyomi. Discussants: Dede Mabiaku, Femi Akintunde Johnson. Bisi Arije,
6:00pm – 10:00pm
100,000 poets for change
The festival closes with a smashing poetry jam session. Featuring: One Mic, one band, one message - Change. 100,000 Poets for Change will feature the finest poets and musicians across the country. This will be the largest gathering, in Nigeria, of poets / musicians, united for a common cause in a single year. Produced by Efe Paul Azino, Aderemi Adegbite & Samuel Osaze.
1) INTERRUPTED LIVES
Interrupted Lives examines the role of contemporary artists in the documentation and faithful recordings of recent global events and the fluctuating paradigms of our existence.
It is an art discourse that looks at the very complicated link between creative practice and political crusading. The upsurge of Boko Haram and the horrible Dana plane crash of June 2012 have given artists materials to explore but yet, it seems like artists are not authentic in recording these and other recent histories. Do we ask that these conflicts like Boko Haram and economics hardships be properly referenced by artists for the future or should artists just do their thing?
The exhibition format is that of a lecture room. Audience will be tasked to discuss issues of insecurity, strife, and uncertainty of our times using the role of art as an appetizer, thus exploring the festival theme: Narratives of Conflict.
LABAF and THE EDGE STUDIO have always been focused on education in 21st century Nigeria and as tradition, 7 contemporary artists: Abiodun Olaku, Sam Ovraiti, Tola Wewe, Duke Asidere, Uche James- Iroha, Jelili Atiku, and Nkechi Nwosu-Igbo will have their works over the past decade discussed this year. The Exhibition will run from the 15th – 18th November 2012 at the Kongi’s Harvest Gallery, Freedom Park, Broad Street, Lagos Island.
2) ARTISTIC SCHOOLS IN NIGERIAN ART- TRADITIONAL & CONTEMPORARY: An exhibition of traditional and contemporary Nigerian art opening on the 16th of November at the Freedom Park Museum, Broad Street, Lagos Island. This exhibition is organized by the Visual Arts Society of Nigeria (VASON).
*THIS PROGRAMME BY COMMITTEE FOR RELEVANT ART (CORA) IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE.
Supported by: Top Radio, Bubbles F.M., Freedom Park, Coca Cola, National Gallery of Art, Pillar Oil, Platform Petroleum, The Life House, Pen Nigeria, Children And The Environment (CATE), Africa Oil Gas Report,The Edge Studios, VASON, Z-Mirage, Amalion Publishing, Nelson Publishers, and many more partners.