The Tree in the Middle
Esther was born on the 28th of March 1975 into the family of Mr and Mrs Sylvester Ogbebor. The last of six children, she grew up in Benin often around members of her immediate and extended family who themselves were practicing artists. As a young child, she was drawn to art from watching her elder brother paint and would use her as a model for his drawing and painting. Upon completing her secondary education, she went on to attend the University of Benin from 1994 to 1998 and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Painting.
After her Youth Service in 2000 in Anambra State, she taught Fine Art at Trinity International College, Ofada. Thereafter she went on to the University of Ibadan where she studied and graduated with a Master of Arts Degree in Visual Arts in 2006. She returned to Benin in 2007 and started teaching Fine Art at St. Paul’s Minor Seminary from March, 2008 to April, 2014. While teaching, she undertook a Post Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) in 2012 and later joined the service of the University of Benin as a lecturer at the close of 2014.
In 2019, she obtained a Master of Fine Arts Degree in Studio Painting and she is currently also undertaking a Doctor of Philosophy Degree (PhD) in Studio Painting in the University of Benin. An accomplished painter, she has exhibited her works in many group, individual, local and international exhibitions. Notable amongst these are, ‘In No Particular Order’ a Solo exhibition, in 2018; ‘Akhe Amen’ a Solo exhibition of painted traditional pottery, in 2019; and ‘Tidbits’, a group exhibition convened along side her students, showcasing classwork, assignments and examination pieces, through the years 2015 to 2019, in February, 2020.
Esther Esizimetor is a member of the Society of Nigerian Artists (SNA), Arts Council of the African Studies Association (ACASA) and the founder of Painting for Social Change Initiative (PSCI). She is married to David Esizimetor and lives with him and their five (5) sons in Benin City, Edo State of Nigeria.
Inspiration comes to me from diverse sources. I am interested in working with nature and objects found around me. I love documenting from a creative perspective, simple events and the socio-economic activities of simple folks. For me as an artist, I think I have a calling to artistically document life and events around me.
I once undertook a project with my students to produce art around the team, “waste to wealth”. The inspiration was for us as artists to explore the use of waste around us to produce beautiful paintings. Some of the works produced were collages and mosaics, using off-cut papers and fabrics, broken or cut up pieces of plastics, charcoal and wood. Some of the works finally made their way to exhibitions and some adorn homes.
Art can be challenging, and rewarding. But the artist must be committed to his or her craft to achieve a fulfilling practice. I love beauty and enjoy craft, but best of all I adore the expression of art lovers as they lighten up to see ordinary things transformed into the extraordinary. Apart from craft, painting in the style of impressionist with a bit of expressionism embedded is a feature in my work. I enjoy realism with a touch of freedom; and on the long run, a display of aesthetics is my overall goal. Life is beautiful, and we as artists must strive to keep it that way.
ESTHER ESOSA ESIZIMETOR (MRS)
A solo exhibition of painting on canvas, pottery as well as fabric collage on board.
This was organised as part of the celebration of Women’s Day activities for the year 2018.
DATE: 7th to the 14th March 2018
VENUE: Fontini Christi Art Gallery, Joromi, off Ekewan Road, Benin City.