Her Majesty, Queen Olori Omoyemi Ade
Tableau Vivant, 2016
May 3, 2016
Fabricated from repurposed clothing, the dresses modeled in this performance reference the late nineteenth century royal court styles of the European nations that colonized Africa after the Berlin Conference of 1884-5. In an attempt to reclaim the gab in history, this dresses are worn by women of color, the costumes draw attention to the inconsistencies between the perceived backwardness of African cultures at the moment of colonization and the history of rich cultural tradition that was effaced by colonial encounter.
Victoria Udondian lives and work in Lagos and New York. Before studying art, Udondian trained as a tailor and fashion designer. Her work is driven by her interest in textiles and the potential for clothing to shape identity, informed by the histories and tacit meanings embedded in everyday materials. Drawing from her experiences growing up in Nigeria, she engages with West African textiles and repurposed Western material to investigate how fundamental changes in fabric can affect one’s perception of his or her identity, and ultimately a nation’s psyche. Udondian is currently enrolled as an MFA candidate at Columbia University in New York City. She studied at the University of Uyo, Nigeria graduating with a BA in Painting in 2004. She won, Most Outstanding Production Award at the National Arts Competition in Lagos, 2013. Her works have been exhibited internationally at Judith Charles Gallery, New York, 2015; Art 14 London Art Fair, 2014; Whitworth gallery in Manchester, 2012; Bagfactory Studios in Johannesburg, South Africa, Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA), Lagos, Nigeria, 2010. Artist Residencies include Villa Straulli, Winthethur, Switzerland, 2014; The Foundation for contemporary Art, Accra, Ghana, 2013, Islinton Mill, Salford, Manchester, 2012; Fondazione di Venezie, Venice, Italy 2011, Bagfactory Artist Studios, Johanesburg, South Africa 2011; Triangle Arts Trust Artist Residency in Nigeria, 2010.