Akԑ yaaa heko || One does not take it anywhere

21 Nov 2017 – 10 Feb 2018

Event times

Opening Tuesday 21 November 2017
Elisabeth Efua Sutherland Performance, 6:30pm
Opening reception and party, 6pm – 12am

Exhibition continues until 10 February 2018
Tuesday to Saturday 11am—7pm

Cost of entry


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Gallery 1957

Greater Accra, Ghana


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This November, Gallery 1957, Accra presents a collaborative project between renowned fantasy coffin maker Paa Joe and performance artist Elisabeth Efua Sutherland, running from 21 November 2017 – 10 February 2018.


Coinciding with Paa Joe’s 70th birthday (and marking his 40th year in the coffin trade), the exhibition considers traditional funerary customs in contemporary Ghana.

Exploring specific funeral practices of the country’s Ga and Fante communities – coastal societies to which the artists belong - the exhibition focuses on the fictional passing of a young girl. Presenting death as a journey, mediated through water, the works consider the trisection of the worlds of the unborn, the living, and the dead.

Paa Joe, aided by his son and apprentice Jacob Tetteh Ashong, will present six of his fantasy coffins, each inspired by the seascape. The works will be activated by Sutherland’s practice, bringing together twelve performers in traditional funeral costumes to re-enact elements of Ga and Fante funerals, alongside video projections featuring conversations between the performers, Sutherland and Paa Joe. Intertwining Sutherland’s contemporary practices with the idiosyncratic woodworking discipline of Paa Joe, the exhibition builds on current movements within Ghanaian contemporary art which champion interdisciplinary and multigenerational collaboration, whilst challenging traditional and structural definitions of fine art. The work also explores the implication of objects in rituals of memory, commemoration, identity, and self-realisation.

Exhibiting artistsToggle

Elisabeth Efua Sutherland

Paa Joe


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