Akintunde Akinleye

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Akintunde is from the city of Lagos located in the largest sprawl of Nigeria.  Globally recognized as Africa’s largest commercial area and most populous city on the continent – it is a bustling metropolis that attracts people from all over the world.  Known for its breath-taking ocean side landscapes, cultural sites which includes the  real estate of the transatlantic slave trade, and a contemporary nightlife that echoes what you may find in Chicago or New York.
Akintunde is an international award-winning photojournalist whose work continues to be recognized through news platforms such as Reuters, New York Times, and many other media agencies. His work captures the heart and pulse of society and allows his observers to bear witness to poignant imagery that is intimate and sensitive — covering subjects such as politics, poverty, love, religion, sports, and many more.

An artistic journey that started at the age of 11, he gravitated towards drawing which grew from a hobby into a career. Self-taught and refined through secondary and post education in Nigeria and Canada — he found that social problems had a common link regardless where they happened in the world.  Looking to take what he found in media as a pedestrian approach towards covering the narratives of African voices, he used photojournalism as a way to magnify the stories in ways that few have yet to achieve.

Through the use of scholarly research, Akintunde focuses on archival films and other visual materiality to communicate black representation in popular culture. He looks to examine the impact made in a post-modernist construction of Afro-centrism.  Exhibiting his works and research globally, he has become a focal point at exhibitions and biennials like the Bamako Encounter and La Gacilly Photo Festival in France.

In his own words: “I may be a photojournalist by trade, however, I am committed to social change first — and through my works I look to provide a perspective of history that brings landscapes to life through a multilayered analysis of problematic issues with the hopes of uncovering solutions.  Presently, I am in pursuit of my PhD in Visual Anthropology, focusing on the dynamic complexities of framing, visual material culture and representation.  From academia to my recent work in documentary photography, I remain resolute with fleeing moments. I do not look to be a representational artist but a historian of identity.”  


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