APPRAISAL OF THE EFFECTIVENESS OF MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES IN THE PROMOTION OF ART EDUCATION IN SOUTH-SOUTH NIGERIA

MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES IN THE PROMOTION OF ART EDUCATION IN SOUTH-SOUTH NIGERIA

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CHAPTER :   1-5 Chapters

MUSEUMS in Nigerian art enjoys patronage by foreigners and middle class Nigerians whereas ordinary Nigerians view art patronage with disdain. It is no longer a surreptitious fact that most talented and educated artists in Nigeria still find it difficult to eke out a living solely on professional practice.

According to Grillo (1990), Nigerians, especially the stupendously rich elite, who could be ardent patrons of art, are more interested in mundane pastimes like ostentatious spending at parties and acquiring car each . While the gory phenomenon of relegation, neglect and ignorance of art persist, the artist like a matured chick is irresolutely eager to crack the suffocating shell and seek his proper place in society. Jegede (1983) aptly describes the scenario thus:

The most sophisticated artist cannot survive in isolation and if he seeks an audience then there is perhaps no other time more auspicious than now to evaluate the worth of the audience… The (only) unfortunate thing, however is that chances for meaningful patronage shall remain jeopardized for as long as the degree of public appreciation of artists remains poor. For public appreciation to improve to a satisfactory level there has to be intensified art promotion and re-orientation towards art by appropriate art institutions like museums, galleries and others.

 

Oladipo (1990), asserts that “our very existence as a people is in danger. This is because our past and our cultural heritage are being treated with disregard and total indifference. Yet it must be clearly appreciated that a people without a past cannot hope for a glorious future”. It is against this background that Museums are today known as modern man’s vehicle or method of proudly displaying and preserving the artistic cultural and historical treasures of his past.

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Before Western incursion, Africans valued art for the functionality. Kings, chiefs and priests needed the artists like modern motorists need mechanics. Also the society patronized the artist for household appliances and furniture. However, missionaries and colonial officers came and condemned African art and cultural heritage with cogmen like “primitive”, “tribal” and “pagan”. Then art and by implication the artists lost their prestige as the kings, Obas and Traditional Priests were dishonored and replaced with new religion and new governments or administration

Ekpo Eyo as quoted in Akanbiemu (1995) depicts this milestone as the systematic population and forbidding on the painful hell fire, the worship of other gods. The obvious result of this was that Christian converts either destroyed their art objects or left them to rot away. Likewise also left to rot was the dignity of the African artists.  The burning of a library housing thousands of ancient manuscripts in Mali’s desert city of Timbuktu is just the latest act of destruction.

The focus of this research is to appraise the effectiveness of Museums and

Galleries in the Promotion of Art Education in South-south Nigeria, 2003 –

1.2Statement of the Problem

There are over 1,000 museums and galleries in Nigeria both Government and private owned, many with department of Art and culture employing art education specialists to interact with children, youth and general public when they visit the museums, making their visits meaningful and vital. Many schools and institutions of higher learning visit museums and galleries once in a year, some do not visit at all (Chu-Nelson, 2005).

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The place of museums and galleries has not been properly placed and given the prominence it requires in the promotion of art education. These have succeeded in creating distortion and unnecessary gaps in the art program, hence roles of museums and galleries have been underrated in the promotion of art education

The aim of the study was to investigate the efficacy of museums and galleries in the promotion of art education in South-South Nigeria

What is the quality of the content of the museums and galleries in south-south Nigeria
What are the art educational potentials of the museums and galleries?
Are there any roles played by museums and galleries in the promotion of art education in South-South Nigeria?
To what extent has south-south Nigerian museums and galleries played their promotional roles?

Art education in Nigeria has shown a lot of neglect to museums and galleries. There are numerous excuses offered by the schools for not taking advantage of art museums and galleries as a source of development and enrichment for the art programs or teaching. According to Chu- Nelson (2005), the main reason of school not taking advantage of museums and galleries is lack of conviction that museums visit can really offer anything of lasting value to the students.

The researcher feels that despite all the excuses, something still has to be done to fully harness the benefits of museums and galleries in the development of art education in Nigeria. Therefore, the study hopes to:

Identify the quality of the contents of the museums and galleries in South-South Nigeria,
Assess the art educational potentials of the museums and galleries
Identify the roles played by museums and galleries in the promotion of art education in South-South Nigeria and
Evaluate the contributions of museums and galleries in the promotion of art education in South-South Nigeria.

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Majority of Nigerians are myopic about the total roles Museums and Galleries plays in the promotion of art education ( Chu- Nelson, 2005).

Educate the Nigeria public on the roles Museums and Galleries play in the promotion of art education.
Bring Museums and Galleries close to lovers of art

Promote art education through Museums and Galleries in Nigeria.

This research work is on the Appraisal of the effectiveness of Museums

and Galleries in the Promotion of Art Education in South-South Nigeria,

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