Writer and Yoruba linguist, Kola Tubosun, recently visited the art-filled house of Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, and produced an extensive essay and amazing photographs. In the essay, Tubosun spoke about the size and features of the expansive grounds which Soyinka hopes to turn into a literary and academic resource, with a guest house for visiting scholars, artists and writers. tourist destination. His house itself is almost a museum, and every artwork has a story.
Tubosun writes: “On the grounds of Ṣóyínká’s residence today, a forest reserve covers every available space except for the living area on one end and the outdoor amphitheatre on the other, about ten minutes away by walking. The property is about four and a half acres wide, with the last acre or so acquired just a few years ago and set apart for cultural activities and tourism.
“On almost every available space around his living room stood a piece of art: ancient bronze heads from Ifẹ̀, life-sized bronze leopards from Benin that I had only seen in art history textbooks, and many more. At the entrance to the building is a carved door from Cameroon (which belonged to the harem of one of the kings).”
The Ogun State Government has declared the home and its grounds a heritage site, according to the laureate.
This is not the first Soyinka residence that has received attention. In July, the house Wole Soyinka stayed in during his time lecturing at the Obafemi Awolowo University was turned into a Museum.
However, these grounds are bigger than any he has stayed in, with prospective plans to turn it into a conservation centre and tourist destination.
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