Introductory Note

By Prof. Austine BARDI

The Head of Department has asked me to do a foreword for the commissioning of Prof. Lilian Imuentinyan Salami Square at the Department of Fine and Applied Arts, our aesthetic sculpture garden named after our dynamic Vice Chancellor.

If time would permit us, the Department of Fine and Applied Arts was borne to fulfill the national urge for academic excellence. The birth of the Institute of Technology from where the Department of Fine and Applied Arts was established started on the 23rd of November, 1970. The famous richness of Benin Culture and tradition attracted the sighting of the institution.

Benin City was known for its craftsmanship and art works providing outlets for trade overseas. In actualizing the dreams of the government of Bendel (formerly Midwest) State, the premises of Mariere College (a Teacher Training College) was converted temporarily with an administrative block consisting of twelve (12) lecture rooms, six (6) laboratories, workshops and offices, hostels, a student center and others by the Military Governor , His Excellency Colonel S. O. Ogbemudia.

Most importantly in the budget speech by the governor on April 1972, the named Institute of Technology was changed to the University of Benin, endorsed by the National University Commission (NUC) and the first Vice Chancellor was Professor Glyn Phillips. The university soared to greater heights with the establishment of the Faculty of Life Sciences and Arts, resonates from the mantle of leadership got to Professor T. Yesufu as Vice Chancellor then passed into Professor Adamu Baikie from the 9 October 1978 - 8 October 1985. During this period, the Department enjoyed many privileges including the establishment of the Faculty of Creative Arts, but unfortunately, the increase of the Faculty was not to be with the arrival of Professor Grace Alele-Williams who reversed the Faculty of Creative Arts back to the Faculty of Arts.

The Department of Fine and Applied Arts presently houses eight (8) areas of specialization namely; Painting, Sculpture, Ceramics, Art History, Graphic Design, Textile Design, Fashion Design and Metal Design. Most interestingly, there are general core courses that students are required to register for and these are Drawing, Art Education, Research Methods and Computer-Aided Design (CAD). Not only that, the Department currently offers the following;
-Full time B.A. Fine & Applies d Arts
-Full time M. Philosophy
-Full time MFA/MA
-Full time Art History
-Full time Visual Arts.
The Department also houses an Art Gallery commissioned by and named after the then Vice Chancellor Professor G. O. Oshodin (JP) and under the former Head of Department, Professor (Mrs.) S. U. Ebeigbe who brought about massive restructuring of the Department from landscaping to re-roofing of dilapidated portions of the Department. Subsequent Heads of Department also improved on what was on ground. However, the Department welcomed Dr. (Chief) John Ogene (JP), now Professor of Art History and Graphics as Head of Department in June 2016. During his long tenure, all qualified candidates for promotion were successful, also during his Headship; the Department repositioned to the Faculty of Environmental Sciences, he delivered the 202nd University of Benin inaugural lecture in 2018. A talented musicologist and band leader, Professor Ogene is a vibrant saxophonist of high grade and currently Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC) Ekenhuan Campus, University of Benin, Benin City.

Madam Vice Chancellor Ma! Your “renovative” agenda since arrival barely over a year ago has brought huge infrastructural transformation and development on our campuses. In support therefore, if these giant strides that the University community appreciates, the Department wants to key appropriately at these times by naming the Fine and Applied Arts Sculpture Garden as Professor Lilian I. Salami Square to the Glory of God!


Prof. Austine O. BARDI
Professor of Art History/Graphics,
Department of Fine and Applied Arts

Prof. John Ogene (DVC Ekenwan)
Dr. Samson Ukweku (HOD)
Ven. Shola Ogbebor
Dr. Paul Aikhionbare

Ven. Shola Ogbebor (Chairman)
Dr. Lovina Onwuakpa
Dr. Paul Aikhionbare
Dr. Ken Nwabuoku
Dr. Kehinde Shobukonla
Miss Queen Osagbaoghe Imafu

Team 1 (Auchi Polytechnic)
Benigbolo Surulere
Omiobor Emmanuel. E
Aigbokhan Ehizojie Isaac
Mayi Theophilus Ekoja
Ozigbo Gabriel
Samuel Joshua

Team 2 (University of Benin)
Ilani Friday Samuel
Ude Dominic Onyekachi
Egbe Joseph
Friday Akpoveta
Ekhator Fernando



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