5 Best Tips on Etiquette At An Art Exhibition - Ili Art Exhibition

21.7.22 Lagos, Nigeria

I love art but have not been opportune to attend any Art exhibitions or visit as many galleries as I would like mainly because of work and the complexities of living in Lagos. But I recently got to attend the viewing of a friend's collection. 

The collection was actually a collaboration - while she (Minika) is a body artist and did the styling, Hakeem Salaam did the photography and the fabrics were sourced from a fabric manufacturer. I attended on the last day but as always, it was a learning experience for me as I observed some behaviours of the attendees. 

I thought they were interesting and said I would share them here with you

  • Cordial

everyone was warm and friendly. Unlike some other kinds of events where it would be a matter of mingling with your friends or people you know, there was a certain warmth in the air. 

  • Curious

questions were asked about almost everything - the art, the fabric, the venue, the thinking behind it, why now, and even of each other. There was no shyness or aloofness.

  • Patient

there was no rush. no one was rushing in or rushing out. it almost seemed as if time had slowed down and we were all just enjoying being present in that very moment. Everyone gave way for a picture, for a moment, had time for a word or two.

  • Conversation

it seemed rude not to make conversation especially when someone is speaking to you calmly and appreciatively. There were conversations about art mainly and the pieces which we were viewing - favourite piece, pictures with the pieces, asking the artist and subjects like those were the topics of the conversations.

  • Appreciation

if there is anywhere appreciation is rife, it is at an art exhibition. I think this is because visual art is seen as belonging to a few people so when you meet one of the select few with this gift, it almost feels like an honour. 

Basically, an art exhibition is a place for gentility and fine social behaviour. I was incredibly surprised because it seemed like these were a different breed of Nigerians. 

Other Things To Do At An Exhibition

  1. Take a picture with the artist or better still make sure to share your appreciation for the pieces with the artist
  2. Take pictures of the pieces
  3. If possible, take pictures with your favourite pieces
  4. Network and make new friends (I made a new friend at this one)
  5. Share with your friends who couldn't make it to the exhibition

Here are all 20 pieces of art from the collection 

Basically, I had fun - I absorbed some art and fine behaviour, and acquired one more contact. Do you like art and visiting art galleries/exhibitions? What's your favourite thing to do when you go?

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