It is a story of return, but above all a story of disappearance that is repeated.
Not far from Lagos City in Nigeria is the former slave port of Badagry. From here slaves were shipped to the Americas, especially Brazil.
In the heart of Lagos City, on Lagos Island, is the Brazilian Quarter, a historical quarter which was built up and inhabited by so-called retornados in the middle of the 19th century. The retornados were slaves released by their Portuguese masters in Brazil and who returned to the homeland of their ancestors. The retornados integrated themselves into the British colonial system and were active in the transantlatic trade. Soon they formed a new elite and bourgeoisie in Nigeria. The Catholic schools with their strict discipline and upbringing also played a central role in this social rise. The schools still exist and the descendants of the retornados bear the Portuguese surnames of their ancestors. The historical buildings of the Brazilian Quarter are falling into ruins or are threatened with demolition, due to speculation, so-called developers and a rapidly growing megalopolis of 22 million inhabitants.
The place where the Ilojo House was standing is now a pile of rubble and appears like an open wound on Lagos Island. Amidst the rubble one can find pieces of the destroyed walls on which remained the blue and green painting from the former interior decoration. The stones look like a map with forest, lakes and rivers, one of them had the likely shape with the borders of Nigeria.