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Ghanaian Illustration Talent Discovered and Showcased at W.E.B. Du Bois Memorial Centre

By Famia Nkansa

ACCRA, Ghana – Nine new Ghanaian artists with extraordinary talent were showcased at an exhibition of children's illustration artwork held at the W.E.B. Du Bois Memorial Centre on Friday, 27thJuly, 2012.

The event, organized by Golden Baobab and the Ghana chapter of the International Board of Books for Young People (IBBY-Ghana), with the support of their collaborators W.E.B Du Bois Memorial Centre, Ghana Book Development Council, Sub-Saharan Publishers, Vidya Bookstore, Sugar 'n' Spice and Acrilex, introduced the literary world to a diverse group of graphic designers, cartoonists, fine artists and painters.

The exhibitors, Hawa Nikoi Olai, Enoch Yaw Mensah, Nana Hene Koduah, Peter Oti Asamoah, Elkanah Kwadwo Mpesum, Ernest Cobbinnah, Andrew Adote, Jonathan Kwegyir Aggrey, and Sela Kodjo Adjei were selected through a rigorous and competitive application process organized by Golden Baobab. They were immersed in a prestigious 8-day Children's Illustration Workshop that sought to improve their skillsets, provide them with specialized artistic training in illustration, and enable them to form relationships with the cream of the crop of the publishing, writing and producing world.

Facilitated by internationally-renowned children's book author and illustrator, Meshack Asare, whose numerous awards include the Noma Award for Publishing in Africa and the UNESCO Prize for Literature and two nominations for the prestigious Astrid Lindgren Prize, the biggest international children's literature prize in the world, the workshop was designed to discover, inspire and empower Ghanaian artists in the field of children's illustration.

The hall teemed with media and members of prominent cultural organizations in Accra. Metro TV, TV3 and the Africa Channel covered the exhibition and networking event.

Golden Baobab and IBBY-Ghana, who organized the workshop and exhibition as part of an effort to address the dearth of quality African children's books, hope that such initiatives will establish connections between talented writers, illustrators, and publishers. These connections, which will result in the formation of future partnerships in the illustrated children's book world, ensure the creation of outstanding African children's literature that can compete on the global stage.

The illustrators' art pieces will travel to London and be displayed to an international audience of publishers and producers at the IBBY Congress in London this August. In September 2012 the art pieces will be showcased to publishers in the local industry at the Ghana Book Fair.

IN THE KINGDOM OF BLINDMEN,THE ONE EYED MAN IS THE KING. FOOD FOR THOUGHT.
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