The Foundation imparts various arts and crafts skills to underserved communities nationwide.

The Women and Youth Art Foundation 

The Women and Youth Art Foundation (Wy Art) was established as a non-profit organization at the University of Ibadan in 1994. The Foundation imparts various arts and crafts skills to underserved communities nationwide. A board of directors runs the activities of the Foundation. It is an artist-led organization founded by a renowned female artist, Peju Layiwola. Known colloquially as Wy Art, the Foundation has conducted numerous art workshops throughout Nigeria, pioneering eLearning materials consisting of 10 DVDs founded in 1998. These became the first of their kind in Nigeria to teach indigenous craft practices across different regions. The Foundation leveraged the vibrant home video culture and flourished at a time when digital platforms for learning were less prevalent. Over 300,000 copies were distributed across Nigeria and to other parts of the continent in the first seven years. The Women and Youth Art was listed by the French renowned label Louis Vuitton as one of Africa’s most impactful creative spaces in 2022. 

About us

It is our 30th Anniversary, Yipee!!!

Plans are underway to celebrate thirty years of impacting the community. We shall welcome 200 participants from diverse communities in Ibadan and Lagos to the unique opportunity of learning, partnership building, sharing of knowledge, and networking. Additionally, in commemoration of this milestone year, we have established an online group to continue providing arts and crafts education to our target audiences, which will prioritize the residents of the School of the Blind Cappa, Lagos to include the students of both Leonard Cheshire Primary and High schools, women drawn from different parts of Southwest Nigeria, University students, and artisans. To join our group, click here:  

Professor Peju Layiwola

Founder & Owner

Peju Layiwola is a Mellon Curatorial Fellow at the Stanley Museum of Art at the University of Iowa, USA. She is an artist with an active studio career that she combines with research and writing. Her works engage themes of history and memory, textiles, gender, and the restitution of artefacts.

She is a recipient of extensive international residences from – The Art of Friendship, in collaboration with Israeli artist Ella Amitai Sadovsky, organized by the Israeli Embassy in Nigeria in 2023; Fellow/Artist-in-Residence at the University of Bayreuth, Germany in 2022; Artist-in-Residence, Rautenstrauch Joest Museum, Koln, Germany in 2020; Residency form Artist and Writers (RAW), Arts of Africa and the Global South Research Programme at Rhodes University, South Africa in 2018 and Goethe Institut Grantee, Artist-in-Residence, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf, Germany in 2017. Furthermore, she has served as co-curator for international exhibitions, including ‘Resist! The Art of Resistance (2020-2022) and I Miss You (2022), both at the Rautenstrauch Joest Museum in Koln, Germany.


Our Strides

SmARTpower grant 2011

Throughout our journey, we have received support from various individuals and institutions. Notable contributions include the US State Department SmARTpower grant 2011, which funded the incredible work of Berkeley-based artist Brett Cook. He conducted collaborative workshops in Lagos and Ibadan led by the Wy Art Foundation in collaboration with the Bronx Museum of Art, NY. The iconic mural at the University of Lagos is a testament to the power of such artistic collaborations. Cook also conducted art workshops with students of All Saints College, Ibadan. At the close of the event, the American Ambassador, His Excellency Terence Mculley, visited the venue of the mural along with notable members of staff of the University of Lagos management.


Over the past three decades, we have witnessed remarkable transformations in the lives of our beneficiaries. From establishing cottage industries to becoming successful entrepreneurs, our programs have empowered individuals to thrive creatively and economically. Our outreach extends to diverse groups, including the unemployed, low-income workers, individuals with disabilities, widows, and youth groups, reflecting our commitment to inclusivity and equal opportunity.

The US Consulate Lagos grant 2017

Well over one thousand students participated in these yearlong workshops on textile, ceramic, macrame, coconut carving, and general crafts. We received the US Alumni Exchange Award in 2018 for the impact of these workshops in public schools. Subsequently, the State of Arkansas Award 2019, facilitated by the University of Arkansas International office, amplified the more prominent success stories of connecting with communities within and outside Nigeria. Volunteerism, which we learned from the programme sponsored by the US State Department on cultural preservation, is an aspect that we continue to nurture in our practice. The British Council SSA grant 2021/2022 enhanced the development of artisanal skills and craftsmanship amongst textile designers. It also funded the Telling Textile Tales webinar, which brought artists, designers, and fashion icons to discuss textile production from their perspectives. Available on youtube:

Why us

Empowerment and independence


Build and learn with memebers of the society.


Learn valuable skills.

Emotional support

Reach out and join a united front of caring people.


We encourage new ideas.