Owen Logan

HIStory of the Never-Used Ajaokuta Steel Plant 2002, from the series 'Masquerade: Nigerian Hits Michael Jackson'

About this artwork

In 2001, whilst travelling in Nigeria, Logan came across a Michael Jackson performer in a Kaduna nightclub. Struck by the audience’s response to the performance, he resolved to make an extended photo essay about the figure of Jackson as he travelled. ‘Masquerade’ is a biting satire about society and politics in postcolonial Nigeria. It draws on Nigerian popular culture and traditional spiritual forms to articulate a critique of contemporary globalisation aimed at African audiences. Using digital montage techniques, we see Jackson turned to stone in front of Ajaokuta steel plant which was plagued with allegations of bribery and corruption. Both singer’s statue and steel plant can be seen as controversial monuments to scandalous pasts.

Owen Logan

Owen Logan