Since his degree show in 2012 Ade Adesina has kept incredibly busy with shows up and down the country and the continuation and refinement of his studio practice. A big part of Ade's process is the ideas which spill out into his etchings and lino cuts. Having admired his work from a distance I decided it would be cool to make some short films and find out a little bit more about the work and the man behind it!
Over the course of an evening we chatted about his back ground, the themes and ideas behind some of his work and began tracing the evolution of his work as he prepared for his degree show back in 2012. Its incredible how sometimes its the simplest things which have resulted in the most intricate of prints, each piece of paper jam packed full of details and motifs, hand carved into the lino with skill and precision. One of the biggest things that struck me seeing the used linos sitting around the studio is how Ade has managed to perfect each composition but in reverse as each lino or etching gives a mirrored imaged meaing Ade has to work back to front. And yet each print looks perfect with feature buildings like Dunnotar castle facing the right way. He must have a special switch in his brain that allows him to work in this back to front manner.
Along with the discussion about his work we also conversed in great detail about politics, family and the cultural landscape of Aberdeen. Having only chatted at art openings it was great to find out about Ade's world and how the Nigerian born artist came to be in Aberdeen. I can honestly say I haven't met a nicer, more down to earth and wise man in all my days. Ade's work is filled with questions and answers and I think we would all do well to pay close attention to what he has to say, especially in these times of environmental destruction, failing oil prices and corporate greed.
For some Ade's work might give more questions than answers but it certainly provides a mirror to some of the ecological and environmental damage that were doing to the planet but prints like 'Hope' might just hint towards the kind of inspired thinking we need to start addressing these issues and brining people back into the fold working with nature and not against it. Certainly if our landscapes and city scapes looked more like Ade's then I wouldn't feel too bad about the world we live in.
Its been a pleasure to sit down and listen to Ade explain his work and methods and certainly if I entered his studio as an acquaintance then I left it as a friend. I've been working on more videos with this lino cut master which I hope to be able to share soon. Until then have a watch of the videos below and go a little deeper with the incredibly talented Ade Adesina!