Home Gallery and Saint Ogun turn lens on African and Caribbean diaspora in London
Four-day Home Gallery program with Saint Ogun Rum celebrates the creativity of London, Africa and the Caribbean with an exhibition, film screenings, an open mic afternoon, and more
A new series of exhibitions and events in London explore the meaning of ‘home’ as it relates to the city’s African and Caribbean diaspora communities. The show is a collaborative effort between the founders of Saint Ogun Rum and Home, a multi-functional creative space created by photographer and fashion designer Ronan McKenzie.
The exhibition takes place from December 2 to 5, 2021, in the reception area in North London, and features a range of local artists, including Latoya Okuneye, Sean Adeyemi, Antoinette Yetunde Oni, Cherif Douamba and Liz Naomi, all of which were selected through an open call.
Photograph by Latoya Okuneye from the Saint Ogun x Home exhibition
The calendar of events includes a flag-making workshop with designer Halina Edwards who explores the history and symbolism behind flags; an open mic afternoon exploring the idea of “home” through words and poetry; and a family portrait session with Ronan McKenzie.
The exhibition and related events encourage people to come together under one roof, engage with each other, celebrate their communities and listen to exciting creative voices. These are the very principles that gave birth to Home in the first place.
works by Robbie Spotswood from the Saint Ogun x Home exhibition
As McKenzie said when Home opened last year: “A new concept of art space is desperately needed, not only because representation in most gallery spaces still isn’t. diverse enough to meet and appreciate the incredibly vast talent currently working, but no space is able to offer programming that places community and artistic development at the heart of its practice.
For this reason, the collaboration between Home and the founders of Saint Ogun, Nic Akinnibosun and Rico Oyejobi, seemed natural. “Home is a space that stands up for a community of voices and stories that aren’t usually always front and center, in a really shrewd and insightful way,” the two men say. “Since our inception, we’ve had a similar point of view in wanting to overturn the conventional in an expressive way that showcases grassroots talent.”
The founders of Saint Ogun Nic Akinnibosun and Rico Oyejobi
Saint Ogun launched in 2020 and quickly gained acclaim for its rum, made from five famous distilleries across Jamaica, Guyana and Barbados, including Demerara and Foursquare. The brand’s distinctive bottle design and name (Ogun is a Nigerian spirit known for its craftsmanship, invention and rum) recalls the Caribbean and African heritage of Akinnibosun and Oyejobi, as well as their London roots.
This mix of cultures is what inspired the duo and McKenzie to focus this exhibition on a sense of “home”.
“Home, as a concept, is usually something that offers familiarity and comfort,” Akinnibosun and Oyejobi say.
Saint Ogun rum
“That said, many of us have a duality or multiplicity to be reckoned with and that sense of ‘home’, or connections to elsewhere, isn’t always static, singular, or even too familiar. Through this exhibition and program, we wanted to show the different sides of the word and how it connects to identity, potentially having a different meaning for each of us. ‘
When asked what ‘home’ means to them, the couple replied, ‘It’s always personal, it’s a place you sometimes feel you have to be and close, but also the distance. of it offers a perspective that helps you understand it even better. . ‘ §