Born in the mid-seventies. Kabir is the descendant of GBADE
OLOKUN, of Oluyimika Compound in Ede, Osun State, Nigeria.
The first artist in his family was his great, great, grandfather,
Gbade Olokun, who made three of his numerous crowns. They
were well-beaded crowns with beautiful colors and African
images. Before joining his ancestor, he said that another Gbade
Olokun would be born.
Kabir had been greatly motivated by all Gbade Olokun’s artistic
works but was not influenced to study art in school. He was more
interested in medicine, mainly because his late father (Emiloju)
owned a Pharmacy store in Nigeria.
His first break was in 1990, he assisted a well-known sculptor
and lecturer in Osun State, Nigeria, Mr. Olabiran Osunsoko of
Oduduwa Art Gallery. Kabir helped raise the Statue of Sango
(The God of Thunder) at the Palace of Timi Agbale Olofa Ina,
the paramount ruler of Ede, one of the most respected kings in
Nigeria, West Africa.
In 1994, Kabir joined Mr. Olabiran Osunsoko full time to extend
his knowledge in art. Together, they raised a 12-foot statue of
Jesus Christ, hanged on the cross at a Covenant Church in
Ayetoro, Ile Ife, Osun.
One of their most successful exhibitions was Odua Trades Fare,
which took place in the state, Ondo. The Town they represent
took the first place. Kabir recalls Mr. Osunsoko saying, "I
foresee you going places I've never been to and that I may
never go to."
In 1995, Kabir moved to the Nike Center for Arts and Culture in
Osogbo, Osun state to broaden his knowledge of art. The
Center creates avenues for self-discovery and provides training
in several fields of art.
At the Center, Kabir acquired knowledge in Batik, rice paper
painting, quilting, appliqué, indigo, tie and dye, embroidery, and
improved as a performing artist. He developed a technique that
he calls Plywood Etching, which involves carving figures into
plywood. As he mastered each art form, he gave workshops at
various art centers in Osun, Lagos, and Delta State.
As a representative of the Center, Kabir participated in several
exhibitions, including the annual American Bazaar, the annual
Chevron Art Exhibition. Exhibition at the Nigerian National
Museum, the Nigeria National Theater and Goethe Institute, all
in Lagos, Nigeria.
He has shown his art in Accra, Ghana and Ivory Coast also at I.I.
T.A Art show in Ibadan, Oyo State, Shell Station at Ogunnu
Center, in Warri, Delta State and had a solo exhibits at Mobil
Court Arena in Lagos and other places.
Kabir served the Center as a tour guide and in 2001 became the
Public Relations Officer/Assistant Center Manager of the Nike Art
Center in Osogbo.
In 2002, Kabir was invited to the United States for several
Exhibition during black history month, among them was The Pan
African Film and Arts Festival, Los Angeles and Atlanta. He
showed his artwork and participated in a mutual exchange of
knowledge with other artists. While in California, Kabir has
exhibited at these places, to name a few.
2007 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
Vacaville Juried Art Show, Vacaville Art Gallery.
Quilt Show at The Orinda Community Center/Library Orinda.
The Art of Living Black, Richmond Art Center Richmond CA.
Hands In Motion at Float Center and Gallery, Oakland.
2006 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
Jan 24-Mar 19: The Art of Living Black, Richmond Art Center
Jan 21-Mar 19: Ancestral Reflections, San Pablo Art Gallery San
Mar 11-12: Art of Living Black opens Studio
May 2006: Group Show at Floatation Center & Art Gallery,
Calcot Place Oakland.
May 5-7: San Jose Home & Garden Show
2005 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
Sept 2: The Coming of Age, a benefit for the coalition on
homelessness, at SOM Art Gallery, San Francisco.
Sept 2-29: Fiber exhibition, Quilts, and Sculptural & Wearable
Forms in Fiber, at Alameda Art Center.
Sept 6-Oct 30: Richmond Art Center member’s only exhibition, at
the Richmond Art Center, Richmond CA.
Aug 11-25: New discovery, acrylic on canvas (batik process) at
SOM Art Cafe05 art show in S. F.
Feb: Open studio at FM Studio, Emeryville CA.
Feb-Mar: Group Exhibition at Ethnic Notion Fine Arts Gallery,
Jan-March: The Art of Living Black, Richmond Art Center
Dec 18: Batik Workshop at 40 days and 40 nights in Oakland.
2004 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
July 16-Aug 14: Art shows at Malonga Casquoelourd Center for
the Arts, Oakland
Aug 15: Family day, Exhibition at first Congregational Church,
July: Batik workshop at YWCA Webster, Oakland CA.
Feb: Batik Workshops at UC Berkeley with Chief Mrs. Nike
2003 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
July1-Aug 31: Hands in Motion, the Art of A.K Adejare …..
Dejardenia Florist and Gallery, Oakland.
Feb 2-March 3: The exhibition of rice paper painting, the Art of A.
K Adejare at jumping java Café, Berkeley.
Jan: Group exhibition at Mojo’s, Broadway Oakland.
2002 Selected Shows and Exhibitions
May: Painting, Batik and Fiber shows at Long Fellow Family
Resource Center in Berkeley.
Mar: Black history month Arts Show, Beverly Hills Los Angeles.
Workshop at Y.W.C.A Webster. Oakland.
Pan Africa Film and Arts Festival.
My artwork illustrates historical events, current affairs, stories
and folktales. The inspiration for my work stems from my culture
which is rich with stories about good and evil, kindness and
selfishness, fate and determination, timeliness and tardiness,
and many other lessons of life. I strive to connect those
educational and universal lessons to daily life.
For me, because I know the stories behind my artwork, my
artwork appears to be a complete story.
I have dedicated my artwork to promoting messages that revive
and uplift communities. Global Burdens boldly addresses social
justice and current affairs, Foundation expresses the importance
of education, and My Pet Duck discourages environmental
pollution. I consistently explore new contexts in which to promote
very familiar, but valuable, life lessons. I use a variety of media
such as Acrylic Paint, Pen & Ink, Plywood cut, Batik, Appliqué,
at YWCA Oakland CA
at YWCA Oakland CA