Professor Adepeju Layiwola
Peju Layiwola is an artist, professor of art history and head of the Department of Creative Arts, University of Lagos. She works in a variety of media and focuses on personal and communal histories which centralise Benin as both an ancient kingdom and a contemporary city. Layiwola's dual heritage of Yoruba and Benin informs her art in diverse ways. Her exhibitions include a solo show, Benin1897.com: Art and the Restitution Question, Lagos/Ibadan (2010); Whose Centenary? (Igun Street, Benin City, 2014) and Return, Raw Spot Gallery, Rhodes University South Africa, (2018).
She has been the recipient of several grants and residencies. Layiwola combines an active studio practice with research and has several international publications which appear in mainstream international journals and books. She is a member of the College Arts Association, USA; Art Council of the African Studies Association, USA and the International Council of Museums. She is also a member of the board of the Lagos Studies Association. Layiwola's art extends beyond the walls of the academy. In 1994, she founded a youth group, the Women and Youth Art Foundation, a non-profit that offers community workshops in diverse artistic media to the underprivileged. Her efforts have led to
training thousands of individuals across Nigeria and Africa in hands on workshops and through the production of the first instructional videos on various arts and crafts. Layiwola began her teaching career at the University of Benin in 1991. Since 2002, she has been in the service of the University of Lagos.