Tiwani Contemporary is pleased to present The Pineapple Show. Curated by Zina Saro-Wiwa and featuring artists that originate from Nigeria, Kenya, Brazil, the Caribbean and the United States, the exhibition explores the semiotics of the iconic fruit, expanding the narratives surrounding the pineapple, re-casting its mythos through brand new works of art created specially for exhibition.
Artists in the show are: Elizabeth Colomba (Martinique/USA), Ian Deleón (USA/Brazil/Cuba), Ayana Evans (USA), Jowhor Ile (Nigeria), Odili Donald Odita (USA/Nigeria), Perrin Oglafa (Nigeria), Temitayo Ogunbiyi (Nigeria), Zina Saro-Wiwa (Nigeria/USA/UK), Johnson Uwadinma (Nigeria), Arlene Wandera (Kenya/UK).
The pineapple is a celebrated and eulogized fruit. But much of the literature around it is derived from the encounter between Western European colonial powers and the tropics from the 16th century onwards. The Pineapple Show seeks to add to the canon by mining, exposing and inventing new narratives from the perspectives of the tropics or the tropical other. This show is asking that we demand more from our understanding of the environment. That we do not merely accept ideas and meanings from times past, that we process and continually question. We feel it is impor- tant to learn from the the world around us by paying attention to how its fruits, flora and fauna pass through us, not only physically but intellectually, spiritually and emotionally. The resulting works explore issues of labour and luxu- ry, power and powerlessness, flamboyance, femininity versus masculinity, pain and masochism, romance, hair and cosmic travel.
The Pineapple Show exemplifies Saro-Wiwa’s commitment to re-defining and re-imagining the relationship between self and environment through her Niger Delta-based gallery Boys’ Quarters Project Space. We are grateful for the platform afforded by Tiwani to continue Boys’ Quarters’ investigations for a London audience.
The Pineapple Show emerged from a particular obsession with the pineapple on the part of artist-curator Zina Saro- Wiwa: “Over the last three years I have experienced a growing obsession with pineapples. I moved back to Nigeria and the Niger Delta in 2013 and started eating a lot more pineapples, simply because they are grown right there and are plentiful. Looking back I feel as if eating the fruit so much in Nigeria had started a conversation within me. Almost like the fruit was speaking to me from within. When, in an attempt to understand my growing interest, I started to research what the meanings were behind the fruit, I found ideas and imagery that were fascinating but did not feel like the whole story. Indeed most of the literature surrounding pineapples is drawn from the encounter between Western imperial forces and the tropics from the 17th Century onwards. This show is an attempt to expand and expose newer cultural connections to the pineapple. To hear what it has to say to through the bodies and practiese of a particular group of artists.”
To download the full gallery notes please click here.