Mike Omoighe (born 1958) graduated with a degree in art from the Yaba College of Technology (Yaba Tech) in 1978, he received an HND from Auchi University in 1980 and Certificate in Polytechnic Management from the University of Lagos. In 1994, he got his Masters in Communication Arts, UI & Masters Fine Art (MFA) UNIBEN 2014. Several Residencies in Europe, USA and Africa. He is currently Researching on extraction of pigments –PhD (studio).
He has been working as an academic at Yaba Tech for over twenty years and has mentored a continuing to flow of young Nigerian artists. His legacy at Yaba Tech is one of abstract expression; one of his students told SMO Contemporary Arts that “Mr. Omoighe opened up abstract art to us… he taught us how to take our eyes off the paper while looking intently at the model posing before us, let our hands and minds interpret what we saw by letting go of inhibition and simply going with the flow.”
This commitment to the abstract is characteristic of his own works. His pieces are often large and colorful and convey complex layered histories, meanings and explorations through abstract forms and vibrant strokes. However he is by no means “a one trick pony” and some of his most interesting recent exhibitions have included stylized charcoal sketches in black and white and smaller canvas pieces.
He received enviable mentorship by two of Nigeria’s arts most celebrated artists, Yusuf Grillo and Bruce Onobrakpeya. The influence of these masters is still evident in his dedication to experimentation and Nigerian political expression and sometimes through his use of color.