Stanley Aigbogu is an award-winning creative technologist and storyteller who was one of 15 artists and technologists to participate in the Upcycling Redefined Workshop organized by the International Institute for Creative Development (IICD) and sponsored by the U.S. government in 2021. He holds a degree in multimedia development and from Anambra State. The founder of ArtecHubs Nigeria, a leading company in acquiring STEAM tech skills for young people, talks about why technology is relevant to art.
WThe hat appeals to you with art considering your background?
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always been on the creative side of technology. I always try to use things that are around me like recycling plastic and electronic waste. I’m a creative person as I try to see what I can do with the things around me. My dad was also a film-maker and I learned a lot about how to write stories. That creative aspect of me has always driven my passion for technology and art. As for my passion for art, I discovered that I could really do things using art at the age of 18 but even then, art was always part of my process but I didn’t recognize it.
How important is art technology?
Art and technology need each other. Digital art is made of software and for that software to happen, you need software engineers. In hardware technology, you have to design products, which is an art. It is an art because it requires an understanding of shapes, angles, and colors. Art and technology are so passionate and important that we are taught in school that they would be different but the actual reality is because they work together. Art inspires technology and technology makes art because of making paints from industrial-technological processes. These paints can also be used in street arts and other objects. It is a mutually symbiotic relationship.
Do you think visual artists should be concerned about the rate at which technology is changing art?
Nigerian visual artists are really late because the world is evolving in how art is represented. There is a strong link between art and technology, unlike in the old days. It’s very different now. You can see things like NFTs that you test on the blockchain digital art platform. There is now virtual reality art and augmented reality art. Art is changing, people are changing the concepts that define art and I think Nigerian visual artists need to adapt because if you stay in the past, the world will go on without you. Nigerian visual artists have to try and become technologically inclined as well. The education system must stop teaching us that art and science or art and technology are different. There aren’t many differences, you need them both to thrive. More importantly, schools and visual artists should start learning more about the use of digital tools and linking themselves to technological inventions for art.
You do a lot of things as a CEO, scholar, technologist and so on, what brings you the greatest accomplishment?
It was seeing the smiles in the lives of the people I affected. It’s more about the journey, and adventure that brings me the most fulfillment ever. I’ve met a lot of people and given people access to solutions, and the kids I also teach about science and technology and art show these smiles and joy that give fulfillment that you can’t find through read the book and watch an inspiring video. It inspires me to keep doing what I do and make an impact in life.
One of 15 artists and technologists working on a masterpiece, The Face, was recently revealed at the Transcorp Hilton Abuja. How has the Upcycling Redefined Workshop held last year helped your career?
The upcycling workshop really changed the way I understood art and also the masterpiece we worked on was a great way to collectively bring together artists and some technologists as well as work on a product that consisted of upcycling. The workshop changed my mind about how products can be designed and that waste is gold. Waste is the new gold and that workshop really helped me appreciate that any material has value, it depends on the level of creativity used. The workshop gave me another perspective on the value of waste.
Tell us about your latest project
The most recent project my company has worked on is to recycle waste batteries and upcycling metal waste to build solar home systems that people can use to power their homes and provide themselves cheap energy. My company is developing new technology solutions that will give people in rural communities and some people in urban communities access to clean and cheap energy from recycling waste. electrical and electronic materials.