Ibim Cookey

Nigeria

"When we are born, we are wrapped in a wax print. It is an important part of every African's heritage and each wax print tells a unique African story. In fact, African prints and textiles will always be part of Africa, so be proud of it and show it in your everyday style."

MEET

Ibim Cookey

Cookey Favour Ibim, better known as Ibim Cookey, his artistic name, was born on January 4, 1999 in Port Harcourt, Rivers State Nigeria and is a graduate of architecture and an Art Ambassador in the Rivers State Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

Ibim started his journey into the art world in 2014-2015 when he entered the University of Nigeria to study Architecture. He was influenced by two reputable Nigerian artists, Kelvin Okafor and Demas Nwoko. The latter became his mentor.

He started by making realistic portraits and published them on the internet. His pieces went viral and he got a lot of recognition. From that moment on, Ibim believed he could go further.

His first exhibition was in South Africa, at the Art and Culture Festival in Johannesburg.

Ibim Cookey produces mainly portraits in charcoal and with African ornaments. Her aim is to show African culture as powerful and worthy of interest, to change the stereotypical image of Africans in our society today and to give a voice to this community by varying the forms of her words, thereby attracting the viewer's gaze.

The textile patterns he uses to make his African prints as a background for his artistic paintings, is dubbed as Ankara fabric which is also referred to as African wax print fabric or Dutch wax. Ankara fabric is known for its colourful African prints, and is deeply associated with African clothing. One of the best things about Ankara fabric is that the intensity of its African prints does not change compared to other printed textiles that fade quickly. This is due to the "wax resistance" technique used in printing the fabric.

"When we are born, we are wrapped in a wax print. It is an important part of every African's heritage and each wax print tells a unique African story. In fact, African prints and textiles will always be part of Africa, so be proud of it and show it in your everyday style." Ibim states.

Currently, Ibim has attended several national and international exhibitions such as South Africa, Brazil, England and France.

Ibim aspires to be in the Times influential 100 and Forbes under 30 as an artist, have his works in galleries and museums around the world and have an art studio as well as workshops and artist residencies for other artists.


Investec Art fair, Capetown, South Africa, 2022.
Bloom Exhibition Mitochondria Gallery, Houston, Texas, USA, 2021/2022; 
Pattern Exhibition Barnard Gallery, Cape Town South, Africa, 2021/2022; 
“The history of all of us women” with uptime Art Gallery Brazil 2021;
Focus Art Fair with Curator Hong lee, Paris, France 2021;
Black Box Exhibition, Disrupt Space Gallery, Brixton United Kingdom, 2021; 
On Display Africa Exhibition, Gallery at the Landmark, Lagos state,Nigeria, 2021; 
“The Sacred in each of us” Virtual Exhibition; Uptime Gallery, Brazil 2021; 
“Salon ART Exhibition” with Delaroke Art Gallery, Nigeria 2021;
Faces of Africa Exhibition, Johannesburg, South Africa with ODA gallery, 2020; 
Modern and Contemporary Art; Disrupt space Gallery, Brixton, England 2020; 
Afro festival of Arts and Culture, Rivers State, Nigeria 2019;
Fusion V contemporary Art fair, Cult House Gallery, London, England 2019;
New frames Group Exhibition with Nigerian Society of Artists, Rivers State, Nigeria 2018;
Coal City Art Exhibition , Enugu State, Nigeria 2017;
New Horizon Art Exhibition, Niamey, Niger Republic 2017;
Love world music and art Festival, Johannesburg, South Africa 2016;
Bella A beau Group Exhibition, Lagos State, Nigeria 2015;
Mente de Monda Group Exhibition, Lagos State, Nigeria 2015;

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