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 Historyproject_history.htmlproject_history.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0
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

Part 1: Liverpool


Evolved during a residency in Liverpool on invitation from Metal Culture, Liverpool, the installation at Edge Hill station expounds on Asemota’s initial ideas on the origins of The Handmaiden, absorbing Liverpool’s rich cultural history and trade relations with ancient Benin.

Part 2: Amsterdam


Invited on the BijlmAIR program in Amsterdam, Asemota immerses ideas established in Liverpool on The Handmaiden into Dutch colonial history, the local mythology of the Bijlmer area where he stayed and European as well as West African folklore. 

BijlmAIR is the Artist-in-Residence Programme of Centrum Beeldende Kunst Zuidoost (CBK Zuidoost – center of visual arts), Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam (SMBA) and Stichting FLAT (FLAT Foundation).

Part 3: London


The transfiguration of The Handmaiden is completed in London with a suite of drawings illustrating the 14 alternate cycles of the character’s reincarnation. The drawings also anticipate Eo ipso, in their description of sequences of actions involving The Handmaiden during the third and final phase of The Ens Project.

from top

Installation view

The Handmaiden

Metal at Edge Hill Station, Liverpool (2010)

Clockwise from left,

Restating the Accomplished; Three Ideas Interpenetration; Particulars of Descent; Appurtenances to Action

Photos by Mark McNulty

Installation view

The Handmaiden

CBK Zuidoost, Amsterdam (2010)

Clockwise from left,

Restating the Renown; Reynard and an Article of Affiliation; Anansi and an Article of Affiliation; Eguiu and an Article of Affiliation

Photos by The General Production Office

© Leo Asemota / EoTLA   All Rights Reserved