Support coffin makers - 63-year-old coffin maker

63-year-old coffin maker, Ebenezer Teye, has called on the government to support artisans to not just exhibit their works but to be able to employ the many qualified but idle hands in the art industry.

Paa Joe has made caskets in the shape of a lion, a pair of Nike trainers and a Coca-Cola bottle. Photograph: Benjamin Wigley

According to him, the government can do this through the District Assemblies across the country. He indicated that the Assemblies could help by supporting their craft with financial packages and capacity training programmes.

Mr. Teye said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency at Dawhenya.

He intimated that because tourists show interest in ethnic arts and crafts, the government should “support artisans with development programmes to increase productivity and income among Indigenous people to expand the local and foreign market for handicrafts.”

When there is a well-tailored policy focused on artisans not just their livelihoods will improve but it will fortify the country’s diverse cultural identity, he said.


“They provide income that complements subsistence agriculture while reinforcing ethnic identity and cultural pride. Programmes can vitalize local artisanship by allowing artisans to reach their maximum potential.”

Mr. Teye disclosed to GNA that his works have been acknowledged locally and internationally. As a result of that, his works have been patronized by people from different parts of the world.

His works got him featured in Thierry Secretan’s ‘Going into Darkness Fantastic Coffins from Africa’ in 1991.

Mr. Teye added that it has been his desire to impart the knowledge he has gain through his decades work to help the youth gain meaningful employment in his community but a lack of financial support has prevented him from doing so.

He has been in the coffin design business for more than 40 years.


Unblock notifications in browser settings.

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or: