As media partner for ART X Lagos, Nataal gets the low down on the city from three musicians performing at the art fair - Wavy The Creator, Poe and Tomi Thomas

ART X Lagos presents a special treat this weekend in the form of the Electric Africa Digital Orchestra. This live art and sound performance is hosted by musicians Aye, Leriq, Poe, Tomi Thomas and Wavy the Creator plus illustrations by Chechet and Osaze Amadasun, all backed by Eko Samba & The Voices. The line-up represents some of the most boundary-breaking music coming out of Lagos, so Nataal spoke to three of them to find out what’s hot in Africa’s largest metropolis now.


Why is being part of ART X Lagos important to you?
Wavy: Art X is a platform giving young creatives the opportunity to express their art through any means.

Tomi: Being a part of Art X is such a thrill for me considering how the universe aligned the event into my world. Last year’s edition was a spectacle and I dreamed of being part of it one day and here we have manifested that truth.

Poe: At Art X, everyone is coming to see something or experience something that they haven't before. What better place for one to tell their own story. I believe in the vision. It's as though Art X is making audible the inner voice of African artists. I too want to be heard.

What can we expect from your performance?
Wavy: I plan to give an experience that has never been done before, especially as a freshman in the game. I want you to feel a vibe and catch the wave when I perform. It will be extraordinary.

Tomi: My set is going to be an eclectic line up of sounds. We have created vibrations that will transcend time and space and will have you lost in the groove and dancing for joy. At the same time, we’re delivering a message that speaks to the soul.

Poe: High fucking energy!

Which contemporary visual artists do you love?
Wavy: TSE, Niyi Okeowo and Segun (God of Lights) - they are steadily breaking norms and killing the scene everyday.

Tomi: Victor Ehikhamenor – I see the universe in his art.

Poe: I really like Zohra Opoku. Her Unravelled Thread series weaves together a mixture of mediums including cloth and old photos to explore her own family story, which is really powerful.

What is the best kept secret about Lagos?
Wavy: The art lost in it.

Tomi: It’s all around you on the streets - in the art, the people, the culture. It's the love deep down in the heart of the big city.

Poe: It's history. My generation knows more about business than history. I think knowing history forces us to fight harder for the future. Yes, it's as cliché as that.

Describe your perfect night out in Lagos?
Wavy: A chill vibe with friends on a rooftop.

Tomi: I would have all those I love around me as we delve into a deep conversation about the stars with the grill on, some amazing new music playing in the background and just thanking God for life.

Poe: The best ones are never planned, you know. That's the thing about Lagos - it's the kind of city that allows for a spontaneous night out.

What's exciting you about the city's music scene?
Wavy: Lagos is embracing new sounds slowly but surely and it is giving artist like myself opportunities to flourish in.

Tomi: Right now anything is possible, the sound is evolving and with that comes the chance to evolve and transcended as a musician.

Poe: It's beginning to diversify in exciting ways. New voices are being heard. The champions of these alternative sounds are not waiting for big promoters to catch on. Instead they are creating platforms all on their own. SoundCloud is playing a large part in proliferating the sound.

What projects can we expect from you next?
Wavy: A joint EP soonest, possibly a short film I directed also, and I might throw in a collection from my fashion line.

Tomi: I have been working on a richer soundscape that fuses influences from different time periods and cultures. The next project will be something to experience.

Poe: I just released a song called Are You Down, which I'll be performing at Art X in a way I'd never quite imagined. Expect a fresh body of work in 2018.

What are your favourite destinations in Lagos?
Wavy: The Place is where I get my food, Sao cafe is the most creative chilling spot and Tarkwa Bay is the best beach.

Tomi: My go-tos are the 411 bar, Meshai Orient restaurant, De Lankaster hotel, Nike Art Gallery, The Urban Nest store and Felabration each October.

Poe: Bar Bar is a barbershop with a bar adjacent. I like the people and the drinks, but what I love most is the music, especially when they have themed nights like Afroween! The Thai restaurant Orchid House doesn't disappoint, plus I like their garden. For arts and crafts, it’s about haggling at Elegushi Market. My favourite event is Gidi Culture Festival. I feel Nigerians deserve so much more from shows they attend and GCF is the way music needs to be presented. There's also a bukka joint around where I live called Beleful - their amala is amazing!

ART X Lagos runs from 3 to 5 November 2017 at The Civic Centre, Lagos.
Read a full preview of the art fair here.
Read an interview with cultural curator Missla Libsekal here.

Visit ART X Lagos

Published on 03/11/2017