Adéọlá Dewis

Lives and works in Cardiff

Adeola is an artist interested in folk and indigenous cultural performances involving aspects of masking – Carnival, masquerades and rituals. Her work explores our expressions of identity, belonging in the diaspora and the ways in which we perform fragments.

“Carnival may be seen by some as contrived. I have no desire to engage with an argument for or against that notion. My interest is in mas’ and a mas’ experience as I see it, is not contrived. It is spontaneous. It can be seen as a re-action as I have mentioned before and inherently about dealing with self, utilising certain ‘ritual’ triggers including the mask/costume, the music, community and the space that permits. I am not interested in presenting a show. I am not interested in a story that makes sense for those who choose to view. I would like to engage in an honest spontaneous experience, instinctual, responsive actions that upon viewing will begin to potentially connect to the viewer/participant. We need to forget what we think we know, just for a moment, allow ourselves to be who we are as we are with the current issues of the ‘us’ that is ‘we’. We need to be able first of all to be in that present space, to be able to see ourselves, feel ourselves and acknowledge how we’re feeling at that time. Laugh if we feel to, scream or jump, or to be still, observe and recognise. “

Recent exhibitions include Me and mi Jumbie: Mas’ in the Making, Studio 66 & Lloyd Best Institute, Trinidad, WI , Concentric, Tramshed Cardiff. Route to Roots, Ffotogallery, Cardiff. She is a regular contributor to festivals and conferences, most recently as part of Cardiff University Performing Welsh Identity as well as Racialised Welsh Identity. In August 2018 she collaborated with Butetown Carnival and Megan Broadmeadow to develop the opening performance. In 2019 she took up a role as a heritage officer for Windrush Cymru.

The artist was in the following exhibitions:
Intermission 2020
Madam Kamboulé
Adéọlá Dewis

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