Aina Onabolu was a father of art in Nigeria,generally known for painting and teaching in secondary schools in the country. Aina Onabolu was conceived in Ijebu-Ode in 1882,His dad was a prosperous merchant and his mom was also a trader. He began painting at the early age of 12, By the age of 32, he had the ability to display his own works and was very prevalent as a learned and gifted artist. He later headed out abroad to learn about art at Académie Julian in Paris and at a school in London, before his stay abroad,he was already a capable and self-trained artist. He finished his studies with a diploma in fine arts and a teacher’s certificate from St. John Woods College, London in 1922.In 1909, when the colonial government in Nigeria took over formal education, the curriculum in the schools was tailored towards the provision of suitable education to train clerk position clerks for the colonial Administration government administration.Art was not prominent in secondary school until a report recommended the teaching of native indigenous hand craft.Preceding the report, Onabolu had formally displayed requests for the introduction of modern arts education in secondary schools but his alternative was dismissed by the colonial officers that the natural limits of Africans was in pottery and craft.
Onabolu’s arrival from St John Woods, London, in 1922 and Julians foundation in Paris and his obtained learning of the European method of painting,anatomy and the qualities of European art education agreed with another point of view on presenting indigenous art education in the nation. Onabolu, who had instructed informally began teaching a few high ranking school such as King’s College, Lagos and CMS Grammar School, Lagos.His topics managed basically with the art of point of view, drawing and human extents and watercolor painting. In spite of the fact that there were couple of educators on western techniques in art, Onabolu’s period began the detachment of art and life. In addition Onabolu adopted an European art teacher in the country named Kenneth C. Murray. Murray’s arrival led to a continuous re-arousing of customary handiwork and expressions.The new methodology of advancing indigenous African art and remaining inside the local archive of information in customary African art was brought into the educational modules of different secondary schools in the country. The effort of Kenneth Murray yielded early profits, as the quantity of Nigerian art educators expanded and information of conventional works, for example, the Uli body and divider turned out to be increasingly articulated.Be that as it may, Murray’s effort meant little in the long run as the country was in the midst of a colonial and Western government which presented its own specific manner of life, prompting a continuous move in the general public from traditional to a Western culture.
Onabolu’s is majorly know for portrait painting. His prominent work was the portrait of Mrs Spencer Savage in 1906 is in some cases credited as one of the soonest exceptional masterpiece that used a western and modern style and technique.Another is the portrait of Mr Randle. He also made a portrait of Chief (Dr.) Sapara which was in water colour.