We Came With The Last Rain

Rele Gallery, London 5-7 Dover Street
Event has ended
This event ended on Saturday 23rd of March 2024

Rele Gallery, London 5-7 Dover Street

Nearest Tube/Rail Stations
Green Park 0.09 miles

Rele Gallery is delighted to announce the solo exhibition We Came With The Last Rain by Glasgow-based, Nigerian artist, Peju Alatise, running from 22 February - 23 March 2024. Marking the inauguration of the gallery’s new London space at 5 - 7 Dover Street, Alatise debuts five series of sculptures and installations, central to her continuous work and societal reflection on issues concerning children. Alatise’s multimedia body of work is whimsical, offering a realm of fantasy and escapism woven together with intricate narratives and elements of magical realism.

The exhibition serves as a compelling exploration of contemporary societal issues, cultural heritage, and personal narratives. An advocate for girls' rights, Alatise pioneered the Child Not Bride campaign against child marriage, a cause she continues to champion since relocating her studio to the UK in 2021. We Came With The Last Rain explores themes of hope for a brighter future, establishing a platform that allows children to experience their innocence. Presented in the artist’s signature style, the works in the exhibition form part of Alatise’s highly recognisable and consistent practice encompassing storytelling, sculpture, painting, and architecture yet remains deeply anchored in her cultural heritage.
By revisiting Yoruba cosmology and folklore within her artworks, Alatise relays the heritage and history of Nigeria as a means of considering its present and its future. We Came With The Last Rain explores the nuanced storytelling inherent in Yoruba folklore, with the presence of rain as the common thread. We Fell with the Rain (Part 1 is crafted from hand blown glass from steel mirrors and magnifying glass, displayed in the shape of droplets and with portraits of children inside. By combining these elements, Alatise aims to spark wider conversations about the identity of the child, challenge historical narratives and present an alternative future whilst celebrating Yoruba culture.

Drawing on her background as an architect, works on display in the exhibition include large wooden window frames that act as portals for the children to escape their realities. The titles of the works on show also hold messages that reflect Alatise’s visual and poetic storytelling. When It Rains, I’ll Send For You is a sequel to the larger installation ‘Sim and the Yellow Glass Birds’ previously seen at Frieze Sculpture, 2022. It expands on the story of a nine-year-old child called Sim, who was rented out for five years as a domestic servant, something that is not uncommon in Nigeria. Alatise’s work does not focus on the perpetrators, or the exploitations, but creates a place where children can believe in fantasy worlds, and where adults can connect to their inner child.

Alatise comments, "Art has the power to untangle the threads of societal complexities, weaving stories that transcend time, provoke thought, and inspire change.

I’m thrilled to be showing my work with Rele Gallery, Adenrele has been a constant support in my career and has seen me grow from the moment I had my presentation at the Venice Biennale in 2017. I am proud to inaugurate the new space and to showcase its exciting possibilities."

Tags: Art

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