UNITED NATIONS EDUCATIONAL,
SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL ORGANIZATION
Mr Koïchiro Matsuura
of the United Nations Educational,
Scientific and Cultural Organization
on the occasion of the nomination
of Prince Twins Seven-Seven as UNESCO Artist for Peace
UNESCO, 25 May 2005
DG/2004/090– Page 1
Mr. President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,
Prince Twins Seven-Seven,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to participate in this ceremony to mark the designation
of Prince Twins Seven-Seven as UNESCO Artist for Peace. I am pleased that the
ceremony is taking place today – on Africa Day – for it pays tribute to the lead role
that has been played by this distinguished Nigerian artist not only in his country but
throughout the African continent. It is also appropriate that the ceremony should take
place in the presence of His Excellency President Obasanjo, whose support for the
candidature of Prince Twins Seven-Seven was instrumental in ensuring its success.
Prince Twins Seven-Seven was born in 1944 in Ogidi Iliku, Nigeria. Art,
especially painting and dancing, was an essential part of his life from an early age.
His career began in the workshops conducted by Ulli and Georgina Beier in
Oshogbo, Western Nigeria, in the 1960s and he eventually emerged as the most
successful representative of the Oshogbo school of painting.
Now one of Nigeria’s most famous artists, Prince Twins Seven-Seven is a
painter whose works can be found in major public and private collections around the
world. While the term “multimedia artist” seeks to capture the range and diversity of
his accomplishments, it does not do justice to his multi-talented excellence. He is an
African Renaissance man, an artist who is at home in many different art forms and
whose whole life is channeled through various modes of cultural expression.
Prince Twins Seven-Seven is himself a Yoruba and received the title of chief in