So Many Petals To Go an art exhibition has opened in Accra.
The exhibition, a selected acrylic painting on vitiligo is by Victoria Abena Keta an experienced painter and graphic designer.
The works are an index of the life challenges experienced by people with vitiligo.
Vitiligo is a chronic autoimmune condition that causes patches of skin to lose pigment or colour. This happens when melanocytes, which are skin cells that make pigment, are attacked, and destroyed, causing the skin to turn a milky-white color, which ironically, most people spent money trying to get, although uniformly. Treatment may improve the appearance of the skin, but it doesn't correct the condition. At that point one must find the beauty inherent and accept what it is.
Victoria highlighted the vitiligo issue with hopes of galvanizing more support from members in various communities across Ghana to support people living with vitiligo and to discourage any dehumanizing acts against them.
People with the condition normally are ridiculed, considered to be evil, or have infectious disease, seen as being punished by God among others. However, Victoria explained that all these are people’s subjected thoughts that can be discarded. Interestingly, in a question-and-answer session with the artist most of the invited guests also expressed similar perceptions.
Opening the exhibition, the chief editor of the Daily Graphic Mr. Theophilus Yartey expressed his support to the initiative and commended Victoria for addressing such a social issue. “I am fully aligned with the wonderful initiative of Victoria, and I give it my fullest support,” he stated.
In her welcome address the President of the Women’s Arts Institute Africa, Madam Akwele Suma Glory, said she was happy to welcome the invited guest to the exhibition. She explained that supporting women artists to creatively express themselves is the core purpose of the Institute.
The exhibition of selected acrylic paintings is hosted by the Women Arts Museum Ghana from 17th August to 1st October 2023. Exclusively showcasing the works of Victoria Abena Keta in a virtual gallery at the following ulr: https://visit.virtualartgallery.com/keta/
Visitors can access the gallery 24 hours a day, throughout the week for free via our online platform on Instagram or visit the address directly.
The work introduces the viewer to the fact that life is inevitable; it flips you around and out; waiting to see what you can do with it. For some vitiligo appears later in their life, a new life experience triggered by something. For Victoria, if one can do something with it like how the Senegalese Italian young man, Khaby Lame did after his layoff from work during Covid-19, it will be a blessing.
In her artist’s statement, Victoria called on members of the Ghanaian society to support people with vitiligo. “We must allow them to explore, to live their lives and be the best they can. We must allow them to burst the bud, to explore their potential. We must support every vitiligo person knowing that they share the life we are living with us. We must stand by them knowing that creation is diverse, and we all can’t look alike,” she stated.
The works are a celebration of life featuring ordinary people with vitiligo who are just trying to live their lives. The exhibition was made possible through an exhibition grant of $3960 awarded to Victoria Abena Keta from the Women Arts Museum Ghana. The selected works of 14 acrylic paintings are also available for sale. Visitors may place an order and have it delivered to them as soon as possible.
In her speech, Victoria Abena Keta used the opportunity to thank her family, especially her husband for supporting her directly and indirectly. She also expressed her gratitude to the Exhibition Grants Team of wAi Africa for giving her the opportunity to exhibit her works.
Victoria Abena Keta is a graduate of Ghanatta College of Art and Designs, the University of Education, Winneba, and the African University College of Communication where she acquired various certificates. She is married with a child and works as a graphic designer at Rock Publicity, a graphic design and publishing company in Accra. She explores her paintings during her free time.
So Many Petals To Go” is her first virtual and her fourth solo exhibition. Among some of her exhibitions are a group exhibition at the Marina Mall and the National Theater in 2014, mural painting at the Canadian Ambassador Residence Wall in 2015, a group painting at Osu titled “In Memory of Our Leaders” in 2016, Solo exhibitions at the African Regent Hotel in 2016 and Accra City Hotel in 2017, the Native Bar and World Bank exhibition in 2019.