Ikakumo life

Exploring audio-visual methods of storytelling within local communities has interested me for a long time. In January 2013, I went to a small village in south-western Nigeria to run the Ikakumo photography project with help from Adesoji Olusi and Sophie Salffner. It aimed to involve school children more actively in the ongoing language and culture documentation project conducted by Sophie. The exhibition of their photographs was launched in SOAS (London) during Endangered Languages Week 2013. Following the showcase at PICS Festival at Rich Mix (London), the exhibition travelled to the West African Linguistics Conference 2013 at the University of Ibadan (Nigeria), before returning to Irepodun Comprehensive High School in Ikakumo.

You can see students’ work here.

One of the Saturdays I accompanied my students to the river where they do their weekly laundry, bathe, make fire, cook rice and yam, gather and crack kola nuts, try catching fish and rabbits, swim, fight and play till they run out of steam. I observed the freedom they don’t seem to have in the village, the happiness and the beauty of their adolescent relationships.

Ikakumo river day-01

On the way to the river

Ikakumo river day-02

Crossing the river

Ikakumo river day-03

Washing clothes

Ikakumo river day-04

Drying clothes

Ikakumo river day-05

Time to play!

Ikakumo river day-06

Time to play!

Ikakumo river day-07

Ibode, the water game

Ikakumo river day-08

Making fire

Ikakumo river day-09

Cooking dinner

Ikakumo river day-010

Cracking nuts

Ikakumo river day-011

Hunting for fish

Ikakumo river day-012

Ready to go home

Ikakumo river day-013

Crossing the river

Ikakumo river day-014

Walking home

Ikakumo river day-01 thumbnail
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Ikakumo river day-05 thumbnail
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Ikakumo river day-08 thumbnail
Ikakumo river day-09 thumbnail
Ikakumo river day-010 thumbnail
Ikakumo river day-011 thumbnail
Ikakumo river day-012 thumbnail
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Ikakumo river day-014 thumbnail

Spending some time in Ikakumo allowed me to make a connection with the local people. Without this, it would have been impossible to gain their trust and for them to let me  photograph their lives. Here is a snapshot of how I saw life there.