Wole Soyinka Museum
Right from the time of the establishment of the Obafemi Awolowo University Ile- Ife, initially known as University of Ife, the promotion and preservation of African cultures, which is one of the four main objectives of the founding fathers The Emeritus Professor Wole Soyinka took front burner. It is therefore not surprising that the idea to convert the former abode of Professor Wole Soyinka during his sojourn in this University into an academic and tourist monument muted by Mr Akinsola Adejuwon was well received by the University.
The Vice-Chancellor- Professor Eyitope Ogunbodede who shared the same vision, took up the project and sought the permission of the Emeritus Professor of Dramatic Arts to embark on this project. The permission to commence the project was given early in 2018. This strategic revamping of the Wole Soyinka building right opposite the Vice Chancellor’s lodge received help and sponsorship of the Ogun State Government, though through technical consultant and expert, Messrs ZMirage International Media Limited. Technical equipment and expertise were procured through this company, while the artistic and museology expertise was supplied by the Institute of Cultural Studies’ M. A. Odeyemi Museum of Antiquities and Contemporary African Art, in the person of Mr Akin Adejuwon.
In the works were the selection, collection and setting up of the artifacts in the Wole Soyinka Museum, the conversion of the building from a living quarters to an exhibition hall, and the redesigning of the Museum’s exterior into children’s playground and mini-theatre. On the plan submitted by Akin Adejuwon is also the design and development to be called the Artists’ Cottage (tree houses for visiting artistes)- to be incorporated into the natural ecology of the museum landscape.
The Wole Soyinka Museum houses some rare and exquisite artifacts, portraits and images from the vast array of the Emeritus Professor Wole Soyinka Foundation collection, plus Soyinka mementos as a representation of the Wole Soyinka legacy for upcoming generations. This collection and others are deployed as a veritable window into the academic and other facets of the life and times of the worthy Professor of Dramatic Arts.