Barber culture in West Africa is something of a phenomenon. The palpable sense of pride attached to barbering particularly caught the attention of Andrew Esiebo, whose photographs tend to hone in on social and cultural shifts in his native Nigeria. Born and based in Lagos, Andrew turned his attention to the relationship between hair, grooming and identity in his latest series Pride, capturing in detail the bustling communal hubs that are West African barbershops.
In his artist’s statement Andrew recalls meeting a barber in Lagos who proudly counted an ex-president among his clients. He writes: “It is this sense of pride and the various ways it is achieved that informs the basis of this project.” Packed floor to ceiling with posters, novelty furniture, TV sets and brightly painted walls, the series offers up a charming and insightful portrait of these culturally significant spaces.