Veteran Artist, Oshinowo, savours encomiums @70 from colleagues, past students

Some of the artists who participated in the programme said their drawings of the veteran artist’s portrait were a way of showing respect to the grand master.

Forty-seven artists on Thursday marked the 70th birthday of a veteran artist, Kolade Oshinowo, by drawing his portraits and reflecting on his contributions to the development of the art sector  in the country.
Some of the artists who participated in the programme said their drawings of the veteran artist’s portrait were a way of showing respect to the grand master.
They eulogised the celebrator in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria during the programme with the theme: “Kolade Oshinowo:  Life before the Artist” held at the Arts Complex of the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos.
Speaking on the veteran’s life, Dr Akinwale Onipede, a lecturer in the Department of Creative Arts at the University of Lagos, explained that the celebrator “typified the very best in the contemporary practice of arts in Nigeria”.
He said he had a huge respect for the celebrator, expressing his delight at his choice as one of the artists to draw the portrait of veteran.
Onipede said: “I’m excited being one of those to draw his portrait today, he has invested greatly in the development of arts in the country and he remains my role model.”
Dr Aderinsoye Aladegbongbe, also a lecturer with Fine Arts Department of Yaba College of Technology, said he was one of Oshinowo’s students and later became one of his colleagues before he retired.
He described the celebrator as “a philanthropist and very hard working”, saying the veteran’s fame and acceptability of his works locally and internatiomally attested to this.
Aladegbonbe said: “I admire the celebrator so much, he is a philanthropist.  I can remember those days when he would go out of his way to buy drawing boards from Ojuelegba for us in the class.|
“I want students of Fine and Applied Arts all over the country to see him as their role model. I am glad because I am privileged to be one of those to draw his portrait today.”
Another artist, John Akintunde, described the celebrator as “amiable, accommodating humble and selfless,” saying   he always consider the interests of others over and above his own.
Akintunde said: “I have visited “baba” several times in company with my wife, he is such a man you will never be boring being with, he is very accommodating and humble.”
Also, Kolawole Olojo-Kosoko, a lecturer in the Department of Arts and Industrial Designs with Lagos State Polytechnic, described the celebrator as “an enigma”.
He said Oshinowo was a modernist in arts who had bridged the gap between the past, present and projected into the future through his art works.
Olojo said: This is a man who had encouraged every artist in one way or the other, he remains a reference point as far as art is concerned.”
Dr Kunle Adeyemi, the Dean, School of Arts in Yaba College of Technology, said that he was endeared to the celebrator because he was determined to make a success of every man he comes across.
He said that Oshinowo was a listening teacher who empathised with everyone and always wanted to turn a molehill into a mountain.
He said: “He is a kind man and we have cases where he has assisted most of his students in their final year projects, always willing to help.”
Adeyemi said that some of the Septuagenarian’s portraits drawn by the artists will be kept at the institute’s hall of fame while others would be sold out.
He said that each of the portraits depicted what the celebrator represented.
Responding, the Septuagenarian thanked all those who participated in the event while urging all artists to shun indolence.
He admonished the participants to set targets and work hard toward achieving huge results.
Oshinowo said: “I’m glad to see most of my students doing so well today, please work hard and you will achieve your goals.”