Coffee & Uche Okeke Episode 4: Conversation with guest Prince Yemisi Shyllon

Published 29 August 2023 in Conversations

Uche Okeke Legacy Editorial

Art has the power to transcend time and speak to generations. Preserving artistic legacies is an essential task that ensures the invaluable contributions of artists are celebrated and cherished for years to come. In a captivating interview, Prince Yemisi Shyllon, the founder of the Omooba Yemisi Adedoyin Shyllon Art Foundation (OYASAF), shares his insights into the world of art collecting, collaboration, and the preservation of artistic legacies. Join us on this journey as we explore the intersection of art and passion.



The Glorious Obsession of Art Collecting:


Prince Yemisi Shyllon's journey into the art world began as a student with a deep love for art. He initially abandoned his artistic pursuits in secondary school in favor of science. However, his passion for art was rekindled during his university days, and he soon found himself collecting art. What started as an interest quickly evolved into a glorious obsession.


"I collect art almost every day," says Shyllon. His passion is not just about accumulating pieces; it's about the joy and fulfillment he finds in the art world. Shyllon's home is a testament to this passion, with around 6,000 works of art adorning his living space. Art is not just a hobby; it's an integral part of his life.



Collaboration: A Key to Preserving Art Legacies:


Collaboration is at the heart of preserving artistic legacies. Shyllon emphasizes the importance of working with institutions rather than individuals. He shares his experience of partnering with the Pan-Atlantic University to create a museum. This collaboration allowed him to ensure the continuity of his collection, as corporate institutions are more likely to guarantee perpetuity.


Shyllon advises against partnering with public institutions, citing concerns about their longevity. Public institutions in Nigeria can be unpredictable, and to ensure a legacy lasts, it's crucial to work with private institutions that align with your philosophy. His words of wisdom are a valuable guide for those looking to preserve the legacies of artists, including the Uche Okeke Foundation.



A Tribute to Ijeoma Uche-Okeke:


The interview takes a heartfelt turn as Shyllon pays tribute to the late Ijeoma Uche-Okeke. He recalls the last time they met and highlights the incredible work she did in the art world. Ijeoma Okeke's legacy continues to dazzle the world, and her contributions are celebrated.



Closing Thoughts:


Preserving artistic legacies is not just about collecting art but about creating a lasting impact in the art world. Prince Yemisi Shyllon exemplifies dedication to art collecting, collaboration with institutions, and commitment to mentoring and supporting the next generation of artists. His experiences and insights are a valuable resource for anyone passionate about the arts.


This interview reminds us that art is not static; it's a living, breathing entity that evolves through the generations. With the right collaborations, we can ensure that artistic legacies remain vibrant and relevant for years to come.


The world of art is not just about what hangs on the walls; it's about the people who breathe life into those works and the institutions that preserve their legacies. It is a testament to the power of passion, collaboration, and dedication in the world of art.


In this conversation, we've discovered the driving force behind art collecting and the importance of collaboration in preserving artistic legacies. Prince Yemisi Shyllon's experiences and insights, as a mega-collector and patron of art, are a valuable resource for those committed to celebrating and cherishing the world of art.




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