Leo Asemota The Ens Project_.html_.htmlshapeimage_1_link_0

The Ens Project by Leo Asemota

This is a Temporary website for The Ens Project an ongoing multipartite work of art by Nigerian born London based artist Leo Asemota.

Asemota has been evolving The Ens Project since spring 2005. The Project’s formative and creative impetus are ancient and contemporary Nigeria’s Edo peoples of Benin’s rich tradition of art and ceremony and their annual Igue rite to the Head; Victorian Britain’s history of invention, exploration and conquest in which the sacking and looting of the former Kingdom of Benin is of particular interest; and the essay “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” by the German cultural theorist Walter Benjamin.

This Temporary website presents an overview of the Project’s phases, its history, list of works and an ens cyclopædia of related subject matter.

Phase 1 First Principles 
Phase 2 The Handmaiden
Phase 3 Eo ipso
Project History
Ens Cyclopædiaens_cyclopaedia.htmlens_cyclopaedia.htmlshapeimage_6_link_0
The Prime Mover’s will on the Architectthe_prime_movers_will_on_the_architect.htmlthe_prime_movers_will_on_the_architect.htmlshapeimage_7_link_0
List of workslist_of_works.htmllist_of_works.htmlshapeimage_8_link_0


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | The Intrinsic Tendency of The Ens Sign / Of Skill At The Oath”

Sharjah Biennial 14


Look For Me All Around You

Edited by Claire Tancons. Published by Sharjah Art Foundation / Prestel

ISBN: 978-3-7913-5851-2

Articles and Reviews

Leo Asemota’s ‘The Ens Project’

Chris Spring

Nka Journal for Contemporary African Art

May 2019 Issue 44

ISSN: 1075-7163

EISSN: 2152-7792


Public Program

Leo Asemota in discussion on “An Ending, A Beginning”

Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | After Walter” 10th Anniversary broadcast

Resonance 104.4FM

19 January


Leo Asemota | After Walter: 10th anniversary edition

Artists’ Book


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | After Walter Archive”

Leeds College of Art

20 October - 16 December

Public Program

Leeds Art Walk Pavilion Visual Arts, Leeds

7 December

Meet the Artist Leeds College of Art

8 November

Film screening

Leo Asemota | After Walter: Act 1

SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin


Exhibitions and Presentations


Hangar Centre for Artistic Research, Lisbon, Portugal

22 October - 27 November

“Leo Asemota | The Avatara Suite”

Tafeta + Partners, London

7 October - 3 November


Work in focus Book 3: After Walter: A transmission in 2 acts Text by Monica Ross and Leo Asemota.

i.d.e./ Made at EoTLA

Public Program

Royal Benin and 21st century Britain

British Museum, Thursday 1 October

Artists’ Talk, Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos Saturday 21 February

Articles and Reviews

The Guardian newspaper, Nigeria Asemota’s The Ens Project Loud in Lagos Lucky Orioha


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Transfigurations: Curatorial and Artistic Research in an Age of Migrations”  MACBA


Transfigurations: Curatorial and Artistic Research in an Age of Migrations'  (Royal College of Art)

Leo Asemota | Sash of Fulfilment. e-Book for iPad.

i.d.e / Made at EoTLA

Public Program

Transfigurations: Performance, film screenings and lectures with an introduction by curator Paul Goodwin, Museu d’Art Contemporani du Barcelona (MACBA)

20 June

Articles and Reviews

The Coming of Age of African Fashion - 21st Century Enterprise (pp 27) Chris Spring in “Fashion Africa”, Jacqueline Shaw, Jacaranda Books


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | Sash of Fulfillment”

The Contemporary Rooms at EoTLA, London

25 October - 14  December

“Leo Asemota | Sash of Fulfillment”


The British Museum

Thursday 24 October

“From the Artists’ Book Collection” Stuart Hall Library at Rivington Place

Public Program

Sash of Fulfilment Leo Asemota in conversation with Chris Spring; The British Museum, Stevenson Lecture Theatre

24 October

Articles and Reviews

Business Day newspaper ‘African Art and Empire’ Kaye Whiteman

Curatorial and Artistic Research in an Age of Migrations Victoria Walsh (pp 32-33) “Let the Museum Speak” MeLa Mid-Term Seminar


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota: Count Off for Eo ipso”


The Tanks, Tate Modern

Thursday 23 August

Public Program

Benjamin, Benin and Britain: A Diamond Jubilee Discussion The British Museum Stevenson Lecture Theatre

23 November

Inside/Outside: Materialising the Social. Tate Modern

21 July

Articles and Reviews

Textiles and Contemporary African art (pp 53-73) Chris Spring “Africa Textiles Today” British Museum Press


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | First Principles”, New Art Exchange, Nottingham

16 September – 19 November

Public Program

The Ens Project Dialogues Part 3: Leo Asemota in conversation with Paul Goodwin New Art Exchange, Nottingham

Histories and Materialities: The Art of Leo Asemota Dr Charles Gore New Art Exchange, Nottingham

A Document on The Ens Project: Screening New Art Exchange, Nottingham

Articles and Reviews

Savvy Journal Berlin 3rd Edition 2012 Leo Asemota The Ens Project’s First Principles Simon Raven

a-n magazine February 2012 Leo Asemota: The Ens Project's First Principles at New Art Exchange Nottingham Charlotte A Morgan

Impact magazine, November 2011 The Ens Project's First Principles by Leo Asemota at New Art Exchange Nottingham, Jennifer Flanagan


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | The Prime Mover’s will on the Architect”. Contemporary Rooms at EoTLA

25 September 2010 – 19 February 2011

“Leo Asemota | The Handmaiden; Amsterdam S.E.”. Centrum Beeldende Kunst Zuidoost, Amsterdam

5 June – 19 August

“Leo Asemota | The Handmaiden; Liverpool”. Metal at Edge Hill Station, Liverpool

24 February – 20 March

“Do I Have To Paint You A Picture?” The Morgan Arcade Cardiff, Wales

19 February – 02 April

Public Program

Making the Cut 1 – Leo Asemota Iniva London

11 October

A Theory of “The Ens Project” Liverpool John Moores University

1 – 2 March

The Handmaiden at Edge Hill station.  Wexley Community College, Liverpool

1 March

Upfront: BBC Radio Merseyside

27 February

Culturepool: Leo Asemota & The Handmaiden, Metal at Edge Hill station

27 February

Liverpool and the Black Atlantic: Meet the Artists Kuumba Imani Centre Liverpool

28 January

Articles and Reviews

African Connections: Collecting the Contemporary at The British Museum by Chris Spring (pp. 182-201) in “A Fateful Journey: Africa in the works of El Anatsui” (ed.) Y. Kawaguchi, National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka.

Monumentalism: An Introduction by Jelle Bouwhuis and Margriet Schavemaker (pp 64-88) in “Monumentalism – History, National Identity and Contemporary Art”; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam / Nai Publishers

Collecting the Core at the Margins: Representing

Africa at the British Museum by Chris Spring in “From The Margins to the Core” V&A Museum


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | ens memoralis - Testimony”. Book Art Bookshop, London

5 – 20 June 2009

“Africa Reflected on Video”. Netherlands Media Art Institute

12 – 16 October

“One’s History is Another’s Misery” Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam

26 July – 6 September

“Living Landscapes” Aberystwyth University, Wales

18 – 21 June

“One’s History is Another’s Misery”. Autocenter Berlin, 13 June – 17 July

Public Program

Politics of Artistic Practice University of Warwick

19 January

Articles and Reviews

Brass, Bronze and Gold: Royal Art and Kingship in Western Africa (pp 64 – 79) African Art in Detail. Christopher Spring. The British Museum Press / Harvard University Press

ArtNEWS August 2009 review of “One’s History is Another’s Misery” at SMBA

NRC Handelsblad newspaper, The Netherlands, August 14 Lelijk ding; review of “One’s History is Another’s Misery” at SMBA. Maria Barnas.

de Volkskrant newspaper, Netherlands, August 11 Problematische geschiedenis, review of “One’s History is Another’s Misery” at SMBA. Lennard Dost. University of West England Book Arts Magazine, Issue 48 Leo Asemota: Testimony Sarah Bowden,


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | The longMarch of Displacement”


Victoria Embankment and St. Paul’s Cathedral, London

Thursday 25 September

“Emerging Discourses Part II: Performance and Mimicry”. Bodhi Art, New York

25 July – 15 August

“Leo Asemota | ens memoralis” (performance).

National Portrait Gallery, London

Thursday 26 June

Public Program

On Practice School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | A Circle in the (w)Hole”. Exit Gallery at Claire de Rouen Books

30 May – 30 June

“Leo Asemota | After Walter: A transmission in two acts” (performance).

Resonance 104.4FM

19 January

“Epilogue”. A Kilimanjaro and EoTLA project at Zoo Art Fair October


Epilogue. Kilimanjaro & EoTLA

Leo Asemota | A Circle In The (w)Hole. Essay by Dr Charles Gore.  EotLA

Leo Asemota | After Walter: Act I.  EoTLA

Public Program

Relations and in reference: Benin commemorative brass heads. The British Museum

Articles and Reviews

PLUK magazine, Issue 34, Autumn 2007, Ten Top Photo books, “Leo Asemota: A Circle in The (w)Hole”

Memory-Making in Art, Ritual and Performance of Benin, Charles Gore, International Symposium 9 -10 May, 2007; “Benin - Kings and Rituals, Court Arts from Nigeria”, Museum für Völkerkunde Wien, Austria.


Exhibitions and Presentations

“Leo Asemota | Misfortune’s Wealth”. Contemporary Rooms at EoTLA London

01 November 2006 – 20 January 2007

© Leo Asemota / EoTLA   All Rights Reserved