VISUAL x TOGO present OMI: A Tribal Futurism Exhibition by Tosin Sanni

Lagos based artist Tosin Sanni is set to launch a solo show titled ‘Omi’.  The exhibition will feature an extensive display of Sanni’s signature tribal art works and cover an range of art materials and media.

Here’s the Official Statement by the Artist –

Miles Davis once said “Do not fear mistakes; there are none”. This has come to embody my approach in expressing my creativity. It gave me the freedom to just create, letting go of my doubts, the expectations of the outcome and the fear that tends to make you second guess yourself. It all starts with a single stroke and I just follow, trusting that inner child within that does not want to be curtailed.

Letting go of the expected outcome allowed my questioning mind to wander and over time my style evolved into an approach, which has now become an ideology I have termed ‘Tribal Futurism’.

Essentially, Tribal Futurism is a marriage of the ethnic/indigenous and the contemporary, but presenting these two aspects in a way that breaks down their traditional values. It’s about taking imagery from our everyday life, deconstructing this image into its various parts and shining a light through an ethnic or indigenous veil. The light reveals hidden depths and layers, which become the focus. Tribal Futurism is at its heart, the place between the layers. It’s about seeing beyond what currently exists and allowing the mind to explore those hidden depths.  

The process of creating in this approach is in itself, primarily about the journey, and having the courage to follow the path that each art piece wants to take you, without having any definite expectations of what the outcome would or should be.

How does this relate to ‘Omi’ (the Yoruba word for ‘Water’)? The process, I found, is much like the qualities of water – it runs its course, you can only influence it and direct it, but it cannot be controlled or contained. Rather, it is meant to play out its pre-destined course and arrive at a destination that might not have been envisioned at the start, but is where it’s meant to be. Much like my process, it is playful, flexible but ruthless. The key to this is detaching from the outcome – letting go of the ego and allowing the id to run free.

‘Omi’ is an exhibition of some of my work being shown in Lagos for the first time and is an introduction to Tribal Futurism – the ideology and the execution. I invite you to come and experience the journey with me and perhaps discover that inner child within you. Whatever path you are currently walking, perhaps Tribal Futurism can help unlock some hidden depths – you won’t know unless you try.

Remember, “It’s not what you look at that matters, its what you see” – Henry David Thoreau.

The event holds from the 1st to the 4th of September





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