Professor Stella Idiong Art Gallery is a dedicatory institution, established in honor of late Professor Stella Idiong, for her immense contributions to development of visual arts in Nigeria and particularly in the Department Fine and Industrial Arts, Faculty of Environmental Studies, University of Uyo, Uyo.
The modern Art Gallery was built by wife of the Akwa Ibom State governor, her Excellency, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel and siblings at the main campus of University of Uyo, to immortalize their late mother, Professor Mrs. Stella Bernard Idiong.
The Art Gallery was officially bequeathed to the University of Uyo and opened for viewing by his Excellency, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State.
In attendance at the inauguration were high profile dignitaries drawn from the University of Uyo community, Government associates and high profile politicians. These include, the Vice Chancellor, University of Uyo, Professor Enefiok Essien (SAN), former Vice Chancellor, University of Uyo, Professor (Mrs) Comfort Ekpo, former Dean, Faculty of Environmental Studies, Professor Joseph Uyanga, DVC Administration, Professor Godfrey Udoh, DVC Academics, Professor (Mrs) Inyang Udofot, Registrar, University of Uyo, Mr. Aniediabasi …….Governor of Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency, Mr. Emmanuel Udom, former Governor of Akwa Ibom State and then, Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio and wife, Speaker, Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Mr. Onofiok Luke and wife, Air Commondore, Idongesit Nkanga and host of other dignitaries.
The Vice Chancellor, University of Uyo, Professor Enefiok Essien (SAN), officially received the Art Gallery and, on behalf of the Governing Council of the University, greatly thanked the donor for their monumental gift to the University.
The inauguration event also witnessed the convergence of great Nigerian artists including notable father of Nigerian artists, Professor Bruce Onabrakpeya. Others were, President of Society for Nigerian Artists,(SNA) Oliver Enwonwu, Professor Jerry Buhari, Ben Ekanem, Associate Professor of Sculpture, Professor Best Ochigbo, now Dean, Faculty of Environmental Studies, University of Uyo, Dr. Anselem Nya, current Chair, Fine and Industrial Arts Department, Dr. Anthony U. Okonofua, Director, Professor Stella Idiong Art Gallery, President of Female Arts Association of Nigeria, Mrs Rosemary Akande. All of who are Fellows of the Society of Nigeria Artists (SNA)
A future where we are ranked as equal in global height among committees of nations creating social integration through the
Visual Arts, providing a vital platform for critical thinking
across media, disciplines, cultures and contexts. Using art and its presentation as a tool of analysis, contributing to the
production of new knowledge and creates opportunities for
learning, for the benefit of staff, students and the wider community.
To create academic environment for well-researched, visually stimulating and thoughtful exhibitions
To foster leadership role in developing educational activities that change the narratives of how galleries work to produce meaning and advance knowledge.
to seek collaboration among reputable galleries and public private partnership concerning exhibition, funding, collection, sales, research, publication and preservation.
Late Professor Stella Idiong initiated so many programmes in the Department of Fine and Industrial Arts where she held sway. According to Prof. Enefiok Essien, “From available records in the university, the late Stella Idiong was one of the foundation staff of the Department of Fine and Industrial Art here in University of Uyo. She won many distinctions and awards in the field of arts. She taught and propagated arts in all levels of education within and outside Nigeria.
Africa’s renowned artist, Professor Bruce Onobrakpeya, while commending the family of late Stella Idiong for the magnanimous gift of an Art Gallery, donated one of his art works which he named Thanksgiving. According to Onobrakpeya, Thanksgiving was to thank God for Stella Idiong’s contributions to humanity. He said he was happy to be part of the process of immortalising Stella Idiong “because she was one of our own and a great teacher with a vision. She knew the important role that art galleries play in the education of artists and actually established the Gallery of Art in the Department of Fine and Industrial Arts here in the University of Uyo in order to encourage art exhibitions.
Her participation and innovation in print-making during several workshops she attended had been of great inspiration to us.
For her numerous contributions to Akwa Ibom State and Nigeria as a whole, it is laudable that this art gallery has been created to immortalise her.