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Encounter with Awka’s child prodigy, Solomon Ugwu



A BRIGHT-EYED lad stole the show in a very conspicuous way at the after event grounds of convocation of Nnamdi  Azikiwe University (a.k.a.UNIZIK), Awka,  last week. The Awka, Anambra State-based child artist, Solomon Ugwu, held his court in the most memorable manner. Beholding him do his thing and interacting with his engaging family made my day, though the varsity graduation festivities were also memorable in their right.

Solomon, an 11-year-old boy, who produces clay sculptures,  of all manner of home appliances – from stove to bottles, plates, bells, cups, et cetera – and even figurines of animals, humans, popular brand products was an unslated ‘show-stealer’ at the side grounds of the 13th Convocation ceremonies of the university.

He took a corner at the frontage garden of Prof. Festus Aghado Nwako Library edifice of the university, displayed his artefacts, as he sat on the grass to produce some more much like a live performance of an art circus, and crowds gathered around him to watch. Some marveled and yelled in amazement at the dexterity of the bright-eyed very black boy covered with clay. Some dropped money in a tray he made and kept among his yet to be fired clay pieces. Some, just stood glued to the ground, forgetting other things they came for.

Child artist, Solomon Ugwu at work.

The art boy seemed not aware of any other thing but the creation he had in hand. This time, he had clay stove to mould. He made the wet slab, built a square framework, made the stove’s engine with even holes through which he latter passed wool weaks. There was sun and later darkening sky, indicating likely rain. The lad did not appear perturbed. He just kept creating the image he had in his head even as legs, hands, talks, colours whirled around him.

His youthful mother, Euphemia Ugwu, said that was how engrossed, and somewhat transported into the world of the Muse, his first son becomes whenever he begins “this his art thing.”

According to the mother of four, whose husband, a sand digger, had taken ill and returned to their village in Ihealumona, Nsukka, Enugu State, her first child, Solomon, now a Primary Five pupil of Eziawka Primary School, in Awka South Local Council of Anambra State loves nothing more than “making art.’

He began that when he was Six. She tried to stop him then until she discovered that she cannot quell the passion. “The only thing is that I don’t know where this is leading him and how I can support it. He has three younger ones, a brother and two sisters. I

The child artist’s mother, Euphemia and his siblings

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