Category: Publications

New release: ATAA OKO ADDO (English)

The artist Ataa Oko Addo (1919 – 2012) of La in Ghana is seen as a pioneer of the world-famous Ghanaian coffin art. In 2002, after he first met the Swiss ethnologist and photographer Regula Tschumi, the former coffin artist, now aged over 80, began to draw. Until his death, Ataa Oko produced a unique body of graphic work, that provides insight into Ghanaian culture and the spiritual world of the artist.

New release: ATAA OKO ADDO (French)

L’artiste Ataa Oko Addo (1919 – 2012), originaire de La au Ghana, a été un pionnier de l’art du cercueil ghanéen, aujourd’hui mondialement connu. En 2002, aprèssa rencontre avec l’ethnologue suisse Regula Tschumi, l’ancien artiste du cercueil a commencé à dessiner à l’âge de plus de 80 ans. Jusqu’à sa mort, une œuvre graphique unique a été crée, donnant au spectateur occidental un aperçu de la culture ghanéenne et du monde spirituel de l’artiste.



Der Künstler Ataa Oko Addo aus La in Ghana war ein Pionier der heute weltberühmten ghanaischen Sargkunst. 2002, nach seiner Begegnung mit der Schweizer Ethnologin Regula Tschumi, begann der ehemalige Sargkünstler im Alter von über 80 Jahren zu zeichnen. So entstand bis zu seinem Tod ein einzigartiges grafisches Werk, das dem westlichen Betrachter einen Einblick in die Kultur Ghanas und in die spirituelle Welt des Künstlers vermittelt.


Concealed Art. The figurative palanquins and coffins of Ghana

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 This book includes some previously unpublished very surprising photographs of figurative palanquins.

The buried treasures of the Ga. Coffin art in Ghana

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 Palanquins of the Ga. History and Significance

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.