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"No regrets for visitors to my exhibition" - Shiri Achu, painter, ahead of Saturday's Douala art displa
News / Latest / Ernest Kanjo
Thursday, 11 January 2018 09:48

Shiri Achu_tiptopstarsTIPTOPSTARS AchUArts

Shiri Achu is without any doubt one of the most prolific African fine artists of modern times. No sooner she closes up a chapter in her painting career, than she opens a new one. And for one thing, the artist is not physically stagnant. Her works have the propensity to move from city to city  and across continents. Not long ago, the painter whose paintings reflect the beautiful simplicity of Africa, was in Australia as part of her mission to encourage understanding of African culture by the western world.  Prior to that, she had engaged a 35InPrint exhibition ride in the United Kingdom where she lived before relocating to the United States. As we write, Shiri Achu is in Douala-Cameroon, bracing to exhibit her works to visitors at her next outing dubbed "A 12-Piece retrospective", billed for Saturday, January 13, 2018. Ahead of the Douala exhibition, the painter spoke with Editor Ernest Kanjo and amongst other things, she outlined the benefits visitors to this cultural event would derive from attending. Excerpts!

Ernest Kanjo (EK): Hello Shiri! How're you today?

Shiri Achu (SA): Great! And you?

EK: Good! Your next exhibition is dubbed "A 12-Piece Retrospective" - confirmed?

 SA: Yes! This exhibition marks the beginning of 2018 and will run through the year. I'm exhibiting in two locations. I actually started on the 4th of January at Thought Pyramid Art centre in Lagos, Nigeria. It was great.  This second exhibition takes place on Saturday on the 13th of January at The Shalom building in  Douala, Cameroon.

EK: Does it mean you will only be exhibiting 12 pieces of fine arts works?

SA: Correct!

EK: What do you mean by retrospective here?

SA: I'm looking back at these specially selected pieces and speaking about them. In a way, I am bringing to the interesting facts to the foreground such as why they were produced, where they have sold, which celebrity owns them and so on.

EK: When and where were these paintings done?

SA: These paintings were created in Cameroon, London and Washington DC.

EK: Select two or three from the lot and briefly explain what each of them stand for...

SA: Distant butterfly is unique to the collection but I needed to add the colour and spirit of the moment to the 12 piece exhibition. Along 2  was created in Cameroon, and these prints have been selling pieces  at The Smithsonian and The National Museum of African Art. It is also owned by Roger Milla and is the piece for the month of May, 2018. What does that mean? Each month, a different piece is highlighted and some of the proceeds of sales go to The ^Raise The  Roof^ campaign which we talked about on Apex 1 Radio some time ago. Consequently, ‘1.1.11 Baforchu big men celebrate! is highlighted for the month of January. Shiri Achu Art 2018 Calendar also runs along this 12-Piece Retrospective exhibition as each piece is highlighted at the bottom of each month. The calendar is now available for purchase.

EK: Have these paintings been exhibited elsewhere before?

SA: Yes, during the InPrint series of exhibitions.

EK: Who are these paintings meant for?

SA: They are meant for everyone who loves and appreciates the value of  art and culture.

EK: Any extra benefit for whoever will acquire any of the paintings at the Douala exhibition?

SA: I will be there all day and will be able to talk at greater length about each piece. I will be answering  questions  and I think that would be a plus on those purchasing on that day. No regrets for visitors to my exhibition!

EK: Is this the first time Achu Shiri is exhibiting her works in Douala?

SA: No, it's not!

EK: Could you remind us of the date, venue and time for the exhibition?

SA: Saturday, the 13th January 2018 at Shalom Building, first floor. The building is opposite Pharmacie du Pont and Express Union, Bonassama, Bonaberi in Douala. The exhibition kicks off at exactly 10am and will run till 9pm.

EK: Thanks for talking to TIPTOPSTARS Shiri!

SA: It's always a pleasure Ernest!

Some major Shiri Achu Arts Exhibitions:

§  The 30th Act - London, UK (2014)

§   35InPrint - London, UK (2014)

§  36InPrint - Washington DC (2015)

§  Artomatic 2016 art exhibition

§  37InPrint - Adelaide, Australia (2016)

§  38InPrint - Jamaica (2017)

For purchase, go to https://www.shiriachuart.com/2018-with-shiri-achu-art-calendar




Last Updated on Thursday, 11 January 2018 12:44
Branding: Koree’s first 30 Apex days
News / Latest / By Ngi Benita Mbah
Wednesday, 10 January 2018 23:52

In painting the face of her life, Enoh Koree would definitely spend a little more time mixing the colours that would best go for her first four weeks as brand ambassador for Apex 1 Radio. It was a baptism of fire-like beginning. The renowned make-up artist, more than ever, got engaged in image-building tasks which from a surface perspective usually never seems herculean, but which in deeper sense, could be very serious. Between December 4, 2017 and January 5, 2018, the brand ambassador made three hectic outings, bearing the flag of the media outfit she has been modelling for amidst great expectations.

Koree’s maiden outing happened on December 15, 2017 when the film beauty specialist cum actress showed up to represent Apex 1 Radio at the annual Buea Fashion Week (BFW) event. She was spotted confidently carrying an Apex 1 Radio station ID on her chest. “Apex 1 Radio promotes the African cultural heritage, fashion being part of it,” she explained. “Our presence at the BFW is just a fulfillment of this mission.”

A week later, the brand ambassador made a conspicuous appearance at the highly-rated and much-talked about Bonteh Digital Media Awards (BDMA) that took place at the Eta Palace in Molyko Buea. Koree was given the privilege to mount the rostrum and present one of the converted prizes. “The BDMA was a great success and I’m glad my radio station was on board to contribute to this,” she opined. “We were quite amazed with the organization and I must hail the young Bonteh for his courage and sense of organization.”

Perhaps, the January 5 “Shrill” movie premiere meant much to the ebony model because it related more with what she does on a regular basis – movie make-up. In a flaunting yellowish party gown, the model walked the red carpet hallways of the W-Cinema Buea Shopping Mall venue of the event, attracting attention from the scores of guests who showed up. Koree wore a broad Apex 1 Radio smile from start to finish, which translated her image-marketing day into what the artist described as an amazing experience.

“Meeting people and talking about Apex 1 Radio has been an awesome exercise for me these past couple of weeks and I just love to keep doing this,” Koree told TIPTOPSTARS. “I keep painting these great moments in my minds and looking forward to making it happen in better ways.”

Last Updated on Thursday, 11 January 2018 00:07
Make-up luminary becomes Apex 1 Radio brand ambassador
News / Latest / Emmanuel Paye & Maggie Daizy
Tuesday, 05 December 2017 19:53

Enoh KoreeScouting for the worthwhile personality who would carry the aspirations of Apex 1 Radio across the Central and West African sub regions was to say the least, the most effortless task the station has carried out since its creation in 2015. It would have been, if Enoh Emilie Faith Koree was out of the picture. However, the Performing & Visual Arts graduate from the University of Buea squarely fitted into the job, upon the initial snapshot on her profile.

In a deliberate option to transform Africa by connecting the continent to the contemporary network where youths and their visions reign supreme, the station had little choices left on its table. Picking Enoh Koree (as the leading make-up artist who doubles as an actor as simply called) only goes to buttress this ideology.

I haven’t come across a youth who is so purposefully focused and does her job with amazingly exactitude such as Koree. She’s one in a million,” Winny, an Ohio-based beautician told TIPTOPSTARS. The beauty specialist, who told us she has been carefully following up Koree and her works, explained that naming the young, yet talented artist as brand ambassador for Apex 1 Radio was the wisest decision the station ever made. “She is an asset and would definitely be a good one for Apex 1 Radio,” said the beautician.

To Pridel, a marketing expert for a Columbus Ohio-based fashion outfit, Koree is a great revelation, if she only goes by her works. “I noticed she is extraordinarily talented,” she indicated. “I’d equally have had her to model for my products if I were to select a face for them,” she confessed.

In Cameroon, the reaction has been the same. “Apex 1 Radio went for the best, I’m not surprised,” Sherilline Queen, Cameroonian actress who has starred in Bollywood films opined. She went on: “Koree’s humility beats anything else – I’m happy for her.”

To the new brand ambassador for Apex 1 Radio, executing the task for which she is hired is primordial. “In as much as I’m glad and feel really honoured to have been given this opportunity, I look forward to performing my duties so assiduously,” Koree told TIPTOPSTARS. “I’m one person who never lies on their laurels - I have an uphill task – upholding the good values Apex 1 Radio professes is my biggest responsibility. I’m therefore settling for work in a bid to give the station the most deserved image out there,” the corporate image worker told us.

Amongst other things, the new brand ambassador shall represent the station at public events – conferences, seminars, workshops, music concerts, movie premieres, trade fairs, etc. She shall present the station to individuals, new audiences, the business community, officials and other groups of interest. In the same light, she shall carry out Apex 1 Radio’s humanitarian/charity activities to less privileged populations.

Koree who is at her best when she is carvings out SFX wounds on the bodies of movie actors as they brace to go on set, is a fascinating stage performer. She did scores of plays during her University of Buea days, including Obsession, written by Anne Tanyi Tang and directed by Ade Joseph and Nkumah written by Patricia Temech, Green Hills by Ayang Fred and Gaining the Game by Mathew Takwi. She has featured in a number of movies as well.

Enoh Koree becomes Apex 1 Radio brand ambassador at a time the station seeks to expand its scope of community outreach in a bid to achieve the radio of proximity mission it set from the onset. A new app for the station is on its way, but for now, Apex 1 Radio could be listened to at www.apex1radio.com or download the Tunein app and search Apex 1 Radio.

Enoh Koree will be guest on a special edition of Apex Snapshot later this December.

FACT FILE Enoh Emilie Faith Koree

Artist name: Enoh Koree

Apex 1 Radio Brand Ambassador for 2018

Central & West Africa
 Profession 1: Make-up artist

Profession 2: Actor

Origin: Cameroon
 EDUCATION  BA, Performing & Visual Arts (University of Buea)
 Complexion: Dark

Height: 1.63m
Hobbies Eating, dancing, singing, swimming, travelling
Movie featuring §  Rumble
§  Our Wishes
§  Silent Road
§  My Defendants
Movie make-ups §  Rumble
§  Life Point (SFX make-up)
§  E Do
§  Muwelle
§  Silent Road
§  40-Years-Old Virgin (Nollywood movie)
§  Baby Daddy (Nollywood movie)
§  Portal
§  Mabe Mabore
§  Our Wishes
§  The Day After
§  Little Cindy
§  The Other Side
§  Shrill (SFX make-up)
§  The Message

Last Updated on Tuesday, 05 December 2017 20:24
Star wedding: Pandita becomes Mrs Ekun
News / Latest / Ernest Kanjo
Sunday, 05 November 2017 01:43


panditaWedding 5When we will not be writing about her music, as is the case in this report, we will simply be referring to Pandita Njoh as Mrs Ekun. The USA-based Cameroonian gospel artist, on Saturday, November 4, 2017, sealed a marital deal which has graduated her and young Edmound Ekun to the happy status of husband and wife.

The nuptial knot was fastened at a religiously-powered event that took place in the Ohio city of Fairfield, found within the Cincinnati metropolis.

As expected, scores of family members, colleagues and friends thronged the event venue to witness how the venerated praise singer was brilliantly obtaining her certification into a new form of art – the art of running a home as a wife.

For once, the song mistress was a student and this time, in a discipline that is new to her – marriage. That explains why the gospel singer, now Mrs Ekun and the soft-spoken gentleman who has from November 4 2017 become her spouse, gave their ears attentively to speakers at the event. One after the other, they mounted the rostrum to tell their respective stories about the couple.

In all of what the speakers who included Pandita’s family members, friends and Men of God said, two things emerged – marital endurance and love. The couple was assured with all honesty that undesirable moments would characterize their matrimony. “That however doesn’t mean you are going to separate, rather, you should gather inspiration from such moments to intensify the love you have for each other and pray harder,” one speaker advised.

To Columbus Ohio-based Pastor Manaseh Omechamba who revealed that Pandita and Edmound were daughter and son from his hometown Mamfe (South West region of Cameroon), where they had all worshipped together, the American lifestyle, generally known to be disgustingly challenging, shouldn’t be given a place to thrive in their matrimony. “Forget the American grammar and make your marriage successful,” the Man of God said.

To the groom, his bonding to Pandita is the fulfillment of God’s will and a blessing in abundance. “She is at the center of every good thing that has happened in my life,” said the gospel singer’s husband, as he looked directly into the latter’s eyes. “And, I’m promising this audience here today that I’ll live with her forever and nothing will separate us,” the young husband pledged.

The highlight of the wedding evening was no doubt singing part of the event – Pandita’s comfort zone. With pump and pageantry like she has never done before, she performed Hallelujah Praise, her current single to the utter satisfaction of her spouse. More music, supplied by the King’s House Christian Center church band, characterized the entertainment and joyous phase of the wedding.

Also present were Franka Faith and Damaris Fazao, Pandita’s close aides and gospel artists who accompanied the church orchestra in musically gracing the event.

Before Pandita, Alex Emile, another USA-based Cameroonian gospel music artist tied the nuptial knot in June 2017. The newly wed artist has spent several years in the song ministry. In 2013, she released her first single, Life Don Better. The video of Hallelujah Praise, the current one, was released over six months ago and has enjoyed a great feedback.

Last Updated on Sunday, 05 November 2017 03:16
Immortalizing Zachary Nkwo: The football commenting paragon I knew
News / Latest / Ernest Kanjo
Monday, 21 August 2017 16:45

Zachary Nkwo_Tiptopstars
My effortful search for words to use in knitting this farewell piece to a man whose professional life heavily influenced me, never bore fruits. Such words turned out to be clearly hard to find and made this eulogy the most difficult writing assignment I ever encountered in my years of experience in print.

I dreaded doing this piece – I hoped I did not. I hoped I rather spilt ink, celebrating more of such glorious moments as Zachary Nkwo’s Ultimate Commentary, which Fon Echekiye, one of the celebrity football commentator’s disciples, presented as his last gratifying offer. I would rather have been happier reporting on a next such project which I conjectured would come, if not yesterday, today or even tomorrow.

But, that I was going to be weaving a piece of writing about my mentor, my dad in journalism and mightiest source of inspiration, in the past tense, is the last thought that could hover around my mind. It’s seriously not a palatable exercise! However, as the circumstances have compelled me, so too have I had to heed to the call.

While struggling to find a silver lining that could console me out of the disturbingly thick dark cloud that fell on the Cameroonian media family, following his demise, I hung on my privilege first, to have known Zach (as we affectionately called him), secondly, to have been part of his  editorial school, and thirdly, attended his school of life.

Just like scores of other young people of my generation, I was one of his disciples and we so unconditionally believed in the man. One common trait that was characteristic of our discipleship to the man, was the addicted love for his professional values which in most instances were unique. There was little that could be done to dissuade us.

My story with the legendary football commentator began in the early 80s when like millions of other Cameroonians, I could visualize the fleet-footed Roger Milla, agile Ebongue Ernest, skillful Tokoto Jean Pierre, catlike goalkeeper Thomas Nkono, etc, thanks to Zack’s matchless play-by-play commentaries.

As I grew to discover a solid love in journalism, my interest gradually shifted from the picture of the talented footballers Zack had beautifully drawn on my mind via radio, to the art the great commentator was performing in such an extraordinary manner. Zack in the commentary booth, gesticulating, in the process of running those sassy commentaries, became the next set of images on my young mind. How and when I would have the golden opportunity of witnessing this unique artistic performance became the big dream. And, how and when such a dream would turn into a satisfactory reality, is what I waited for with an uncontrollable anxiety.

In mid-1993, during a maiden physical visit to a radio station, I met Zack for the first time. I had only visited CRTV Buea to take part in a radio show for pupils and students on vacation. Each day I showed up for Holiday Workshop, the said programme, I would spot the man who was later going to be my mentor, from a distance, but would lack the courage to approach and announce my long-time admiration for his craft. How was I going to line up my words before start delivering them to such a mighty house in journalism, if I had not sufficiently rehearsed them? Zack of course was and still is a 20-ton weight media personality.

It was not until June of 1996, when I found strength to meet the man and confess my love for his works. This time, I had made it to CRTV Buea as a journalism student on internship, from the University of Buea. That fateful morning, after the news conference, I mustered courage, walked into his office just next to the newsroom (for those who know the Likoko Membea building) and reported myself. In addition to my testimony of clinging to my radio set back in the 80s to feed on his commentaries, I revealed to Zack that I had a knack for sports reporting and would praise God forever, if he allowed me write and present papers on his week Sports Special show.

Zack wouldn’t quickly fall for serious things. He would joke at everything and make fun of the most serious ones. The rest of the time I spent with the guru in his office that day was fun about everything else, except his success story in football play-by-play reporting and/or the Sports Special show I badly yearned to be co-opted in. He was neither friends with self-aggrandizement nor praises rained on him. To Zack, living a down-to-earth life was more important than the great strides he had made in football reporting.

However, at the end of the day, he gave me a topic for a three-minute report on the next Sports Special edition. My task was to do some analyses on the 1996 South West Second Division football championship which was ongoing. You can guess how I stayed awake all night, making sure I flexed all my writing muscles to impress the man whose record in the commentary booth has never been beaten. Also, I was going to be on a show that was widely savoured in South West and Littoral homes with unending appetite. Every such thought, prior my maiden participation on Sports Special was palpitating.

To be continued…….…..

Last Updated on Monday, 21 August 2017 16:56
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