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Davido's '1 Milli' Video Called Out for Allegedly Copying the Work of Nigerian Artist Adeyemi Michael

Some viewers have pointed out striking similarities between the artist's latest music video and the 2018 short film 'Entitled' by British-Nigerian filmmaker Adeyemi Michael.

Update 03/06/2020: The director of Davido's "1 Milli" stated, in an Instagram story from 2 days ago, that he was in fact "inspired" by Micheal's work and "always wanted to recreate his iconic shot," making direct reference to the shot of Michael's mother on horseback.

"Paying respect and homage to @AdeyemiMichael for the inspiration on this frame in the '1 Milli' video," wrote Dir. K in an Instagram story, that now appears as a highlight on his page. Despite the director's acknowledgment of the reference via Instagram stories, it is not clear whether Michael was asked or made aware beforehand. As of Friday, he has not been formally credited.

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Last week, Nigerian megastar Davido released the music video for his single "1 Milli," which depicted a wedding celebration between he and his fiancé Chioma Rowland. The festive video was mostly well-recieved upon its release, but now the artist is being accused of having copied the work of Nigerian-British filmmaker Adeyemi Michael.

Davido's music video, which was directed by Dir. K, features a ceremonial scene in which a middle-aged women, dressed in regal traditional attire, appears on horseback amongst a celebratory crowd. Several observers online noted that the scene bears a striking resemblance to Michael's 2018 short film, Entitled, which featured memorable shots of his mother donning traditional Yoruba attire and riding a horse through London's Peckham neighborhood. The film highlights the plight of immigrants and their ability to overcome, through shots that show Michael's mother as a regal and powerful matriarch.

Take a look at the short film below:

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"Zion 9, 2018" (inkjet on Hahnemuhle photo rag)" by Mohau Modisakeng. Photo courtesy of Jenkins Johnson Gallery.

South African Artist Mohau Modisakeng Makes Solo NYC Debut With 'A Promised Land'

The artist will present the video installation 'ZION' and other works centering on the "global history of displacement of Black communities" at the Jenkins Johnson Gallery in Brooklyn.

Renowned South African visual artist Mohau Modisakeng presents A Promised Land, his latest solo exhibition, opening at Brooklyn's Jenkins Johnson Gallery this month. This marks the New York debut of Modisakeng's ZION video installation, based on the artists's 2017 performance art series by the same name. It originally debuted at the Performa Biennial.

"In ZION the artist deals with the relationship between body, place and the global history of displacement of Black communities," reads a press release. "There is an idea that all people are meant to belong somewhere, yet in reality there are millions of people who are unsettled, in search of refuge, migrating across borders and landscapes for various reasons."

In addition to the video, the show also features seven large-scale photographs that communicate themes of Black displacement. From 19th century Black settlements in New York City, which as the press release notes, were eradicated to clear space for the development of Central Park, to the scores of Africans who have faced conflict that has led them to life as refugees in foreign lands.

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