Thursday, April 23, 2009

Children's Art from Adugyama, Ghana

I have fulfilled my mission. I came into the world with song. No one can sing with my voice. But I have nothing, neither children nor wealth. My reward is beyond, and here in the words I leave with you the youth. My songs are gifts from the creator himself.

--Hesino Akpalu, Ewe Poet from Guardians of the Sacred Word (New York: Nok 1974 Ed. Kofi Awoonor.

I was working outside and Papa Yaw Opare stopped by. He was watching me for awhile. Then, I gave him some paper and a ballpoint pen. He did some drawings and then he started writing. Below is what he wrote.

What Papa Yaw Opare wrote:

Narrated by Papa Yaw Opare
My Self

My Name is Papa Yaw OPare. I at the age of elevn years old (11) My mothers name is cinthia Asamoah and my fathers name is Kofi otu.

I attend school at hope international school. I am in class five (5). I come from Akwapim Manfi but I stay at Adugyama. I am Chocolate in complexion.

This is the table I've been working at. Children stop by and I will give them paper, a pen, or colored pencils, and then they draw with me. I also have books that they will read.

For two weeks I was working mostly at this table. Lately, I've been going outside to draw and paint. Maybe one or two students will drop by and I will give them some supplies to work with.

If some students are at the table, I'll give them supplies as well and stop by and see what they are doing. This past week, I started painting with dirt and charcoal, so that has been keeping me busy outide.

It's great for the students to see. I tell them it's Adugyama Paint, very affordable. They look inside my little tin can and see dirt. I show them all the different tones I can make by adding water or using dry brush.

This drawing by Yaw Bimpe is based on one of my drawings. He came up with the idea of using Adinkra symbols in his drawing. In this one, there are two. Then, he took some of my elements and created a new composition.

The age of the children drawing range between 3 and 19 yrs. old. A few adults have also drawn with us. I'll be gradually posting more photos to my flickr page, so you can see more there.

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