The unmatched art world of the greatest African art collector
“It is a glorious obsession. It goes from interest to passion and passion to obsession until you are buying artwork at every auction and you have to build new storage spaces just to house your art collection.” here
I was on a random search on the internet when I bumped into Omooba Yemisi Adedoyin Shyllon (here). Please allow me tell you a bit about the humble Prince. Prince Shyllon is a legal practitioner, amongst other broad business interests. He is widely acknowledged to own the most balanced art collection in Nigeria, and probably Africa. He is also extensively recognised as the leading advocate of Nigerian art & culture and he is one of the few licensed Nigerian art auctioneers.
As an art lover, I was inspired by him even without meeting him. I asked myself countlessly if it was possible for one man to collect as much as 7,000 artworks and over 50,000 photographs documenting the cultural festivals in Nigeria.
I was 'hungry' to know more and the researcher in me began to dig further. Eventually, I realised the Prince doesn't have an Art gallery or museum but his home is an art world and private museum. As you will expect of an co-art lover, I strategised to locate and visit his house and as they say, the rest is history.
My pictures, which will take you on a tour of his house, are all from his garden as cameras are not allowed in his private museum. I can tell you though that all the buildings in the compound are unbelievably loaded with art works from far back 1975 to date and covering Aina Onabolu, Susanne Wenger, Nike Davis-Okundaye, Ben Enwonwu, Pa Bruce Onobrakpeya, Peju Alatise, Oregsegun Olumide et al
Gosh! I was like a child in a candy store. Lest I forget, for the first time ever I saw the Nok terracotta, something I only heard about in school. I was in awe. If you have ever been to Freedom park, now you know the unnamed donor of the sculptures/statutes there.
Please allow my pictures give you a sneak peek into the 'Africa wonder'.
For those who value African art, masks, and the general history of the continent this is the place to experience it all.