The artist Ataa Oko Addo (1919–2012) from La in Ghana was a pioneer of today’s world-famous Ghanaian coffin art. In 2002, after meeting Regula Tschumi, the former coffin artist began drawing at the age of 80. Thus, until his death, a unique graphic work was created, which gives the western observer an insight into the culture of Ghana and into the spiritual world of the artist.
Regula Tschumi’s book is based on her PhD and on several years of field research in southern Ghana. For the first time in this publication the figural palanquins of the Ga are in focus. They are examined in the context of the sociey from which they have developed and in which they are still being used. This book includes some previously unpublished very surprising photographs of figurative palanquins.
For about fifty years the Ga coffins have been produced in the form of fruits, animals and status symbols and have thus established a tradition, which is presented here for the first time in a well-founded text and in numerous expressive illustrations. R. Tschumi traces the history of these figurative coffins in the art and religion of the Ga in Ghana.
This is a completely revised and updated edition of the Benteli book 2008.
The figurative coffins of the Ga were for a long time celebrated as a revolutionary invention of an autonomous artist – the coffin-maker Kane Kwei from Teshi. However, R. Tschumi’s recent research results show that both science and the art world have been exposed to a great error due to lack of information. This text illuminates the origins of the figurative coffins from the figurative palanquins and summarizes the most important research results of the author.
This text reflects the background, which led the curators of the Musée d’ethnographie Neuchâtel MEN to commission Regula Tschumi to develop the poster for the exhibition “Hors-champs” in collaboration with Ghanaian sign painters.
This catalogue is out of print.
The German text was again thoroughly reworked for this French translation and updated with new photographs.
The German text of «The buried treasures of the Ga» (2006) was revised for this English translation and updated with new photos.
The edition 2008 is out of print.
This book is out of print.