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Regional News | Jan 28, 2005

"Strangers in Accra" launched

GNA

Accra, Jan. 28, GNA - Mr Nat Nunoo Amarteifio, Former Mayor of Accra, on Thursday called on the Government to invest in the development of contemporary art as a way of preserving the national culture.

He said: "Our governments, present and past have maintained the idea that culture is all about drumming and dancing and so they often channel the scarce resources that should go into promoting culture and arts into drumming and dancing to the detriment of the contemporary arts."

Mr Amarteifio made the call when he launched "Strangers in Accra, and Other Stories", a 294-page book written by Virginia Ryan, an Australian Artist, Writer, Art Therapist and wife of the Mr Giancarllo Izzo, The Italian Ambassador to Ghana, who also sponsored the publication.

The book, published by Afram Publications Ghana Limited, contained 14 different stories of the writer's real experiences in various communities of Ghana over the past four years.

Dr Esi Sutherland Addy, a Lecturer at the University of Ghana was the editor and writer of the preface of the book, which opens with a story titled; "Meeting Almighty Akoto" and closes with another story "In Princes' Town".

Mr Amarteifio described the book as a family diary about places and things, which were likely to disappear in the future, saying it would serve as a historical reference manual for posterity.

He said the proceeds from the sale of the book would go into establishing a salon for contemporary artists to sit and share ideas on how to use contemporary art as a national development tool.

Virginia, the writer herself with the assistance of another contemporary artist, dramatized the reading of a portion of a story in the book set in a typical artefacts shop where the writer went to buy some wood carvings.

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