“I want to do something different today, something unplanned, go somewhere no one has heard of before,” I lamented to R.
“OK,” he enthusiastically responded. “Where are we going?”
“This place called the Red Door Gallery in Victoria Island.”
Going to a new place in Lagos is kind of a crap shoot. Here are my observations and thoughts on “venturing out” in Lagos:
- Most buildings do not have visible addresses. Which means…
- It’s best if your driver already knows where you want to go or…
- He has a friend who knows where you want to go or…
- You trust your luck enough to end up where you wanted to be in the first place.
Luckily for us, we (after much searching, stopping and asking roadside fruit sellers for directions, being lost for a few minutes, OF COURSE USING GOOGLE MAPS, and many silent prayers to the “unplanned trips gods”) ended up at our destination: The Red Door Art Gallery.
This lovely little place in the Victoria Island area of Lagos is a free to the public, two-story, very-well air conditioned art gallery featuring works from various Nigerian artists. It is a small museum, but the experience was great.
There was a very knowledgeable docent working and in true Nigerian fashion, she followed us from room to room, examining our faces to see when we might have a question. Although this behavior used to drive me mad, I have since grown a little bit accustomed to it. It happens in smaller stores, too. The employees will sometimes basically follow you around like a shadow, but they’re just trying to be helpful. It’s a stark change from the “wander helplessly until you want to give us money” approach that we have in the USA, but I do miss that approach, to be honest.
Back to the delightful docent…
She told us about several works of art and explained a lot about how some of the artists were black African feminists, which I found SO INTERESTING.
It was a delightful outing. And yes, I do realize how many times I’ve used “delightful” in this post. The word just perfectly describes my feeling when I left and the overall experience.
Views from the second floor of the Red Door Art Gallery. It was a gorgeous day outside.
Two of my favorite art pieces.
You can reach the gallery’s website at:
Wherever you are in the world, where is your favorite place to see art?
See y’all tomorrow, my friends.