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Interview: Hoviare Freedom

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I met Hoviare Freedom’s work before I met her and I have to say, I was amazed. I just had to organize an interview with her to meet the person behind these works.

Here’s a look into the life of Hovi; Artist, Painter and Sculptor.


 

3rty: Tell us about yourself.

Hovi: The name’s Hoviare Freedom, I’m from Cross River State, Abi LGA precisely. It’s a small place.

I’m an artist, born into a family of five, that’s plus my folks. I’m the only girl. I’m not much of a social animal. Art and music are my soul food. That’s basically me in a nutshell.

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3rty: How was growing up for you?

Hovi: From the home front? It was fun, just the normal things. I was a church kid, played a lot, raised to appreciate good music. My father is a follower of all things good, musically that is.

Art was a low key thing for me then because you know, they feed you that science is king stuff and if you not with it you are somewhat seen as an inferior specie.

I just used to do cartoons a lot way back. It was a talent and nothing more. Academically, I was good. I don’t mean to brag but I was a smart kid, top of the class till I woke up to the science reality and you know. (Laughs)

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3rty: What did you do with the cartoons?

Hovi: I used to develop characters, draw them and colour. Copy some most times and even do comic books. Little beginnings.

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3rty: So, did you ever move to art class?

Hovi: No. I didn’t. I finished school as a science student. I was too young so I had to stay a year before getting into the university. That one year changed everything.

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3rty: What happened in that life-changing year?

Hovi: (Laughs) Well, I got talking with my cousin one day; she’s light years ahead of me. We were talking about everything and she asked if I woke up right, “you are still dazed and all. What’s the one thing you can do perfectly?”

I said drawing without thinking too hard and she just laughed and said, “so why Medicine?”

I had no flipping idea why I wanted to do it except for the fact that I thought I had the mental capacity for it and that changed everything.

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3rty: So, what did you decide to do?

Hovi: First off, I had to talk my parents out of the science idea they had about my life. It wasn’t easy at all; they both saw it as a hobby and not something to be taken that seriously.

I even had to involve some extended family that could help change their minds. As soon as that was done I had to re-write WAEC because I didn’t write art in my first sitting. So I registered for it; still science combination but with art this time.

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3rty: So, what did you study in the university?

Hovi: I’m studying Fine and Applied arts at The University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

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3rty: Okay. So, you are getting formal training in your craft.

Hovi: Yes, I am.

3rty: Are your parents supportive of it now?

Hovi: Yes, they are.

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3rty: So, do you find it rewarding and satisfying?

Hovi: (Laughs) It is satisfying making art. Rewarding? It is to an extent, yeah.

It’s a tough path to follow in the sense that the ‘rewards’ don’t just come so easy. You have to give the audience some time to appreciate and recognize what you doing before you get the ‘reward’.

That’s the phase I’m in now right now, a minority can relate to it but its good, satisfying still.

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3rty: Have you sold any of your works?

Hovi: Yes I have.

3rty: What is the most you’ve sold one for?

Hovi: (Smiles) 20k a piece

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3rty: Which do you enjoy the most, writing, painting or sculpting?

Hovi: It depends on my mood

3rty: Who are your biggest influences?

Hovi: George Odoh, he’s a painter and a draughtsman. And an amazing one at that.

3rty: What materials do you prefer to work with?

Hovi: Charcoal mostly. Clay was fun to work with because of its flexibility but I’m off that now.

Charcoal is it. I’m going head on into draughtsmanship so you know.

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3rty: What plans have you made to go commercial?

Hovi: For now, I really don’t have any plans of going commercial. In reality, is not on my mind just yet. I’d do whatever private commissions I lay hands on and that’s it for now.

3rty: Do you have any advice for Nigerian Youths.

Hovi: Well, there’s so much that’s expected of us. There’s so much a single person has to offer and there’re still so many challenges out there.

So put God first, pursue what you genuinely have a passion for regardless of demeaning opinions. I believe that’s where happiness and success meet.

You might not get results immediately but just keep doing it for the love of it. It’s crazy we all want fast money now. It’s tempting but not worth it in the long run. It would do good to focus on what’s right.

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3rty: How can people who want to work with you contact you?

Hovi: My email address is Hovee028@yahoo.com. Twitter is; @ill_myth and Instagram is; @Hovii_are. My Phone Number is +2348079503669.

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