Over several acres of land in Nuhalenya – Ada Foah, Ghana you will find many aspects that make up the Nkyinkyim museum. The installation is the work of creative director, cultural activist and award-winning Ghanaian artist Kwame Akoto Bamfo. He has created one of the biggest outdoor museum from his concept since 2011 with currently 3500 installation, but the goal is to make 11,111 sculptures. https://ancestorprojectgh.com/
(image of Kwame from Cultured Magazine)
Nkyinkyim is an Akan Adinkra symbol meaning twisted and a proverb meaning ‘life’s journey is twisted’. According to our past, African history has many twists and turns. African history, Ancestry and the journey are reclaimed and portrayed through the Nkyinkyim installation. It is an archive that preserves and honours our rich culture.
The Griots will lead you through the outdoor museum describing the installations, telling tales and stories with the symbolic meanings about the different statues, drawings, symbols and sculptures displayed.
Cycle of Life – is represented by this 5 pieces of wooden structure. On top of the wooden poles are figurines impersonating different life roles/activities.
Monumental Statues – There are 3 statues paying homage to civilization, about 24ft high, hollow from base upwards.
Sudano Sahelian architectural monument was made using modern material, engraved with Adinkra and Kemet symbols that tell a story.
The Obelisk was built in 2019. Engraved with foot prints in different directions, meaning everyone is at a different times in their life’s. The ant represents bravery and hard work. The tortoise is slow but produces. The Spider represents Anansi – wise and crafty.
The Male and Female head represents balance. The curve is a counter balance of the spine. Built in 2020
The Sacred Grounds are dedicated to preserved African history and honour the memory of captives and victims of the enslavement trade. The Ancestral heads are life-sized made from concrete and terracotta and others made from clay, that capture expressions of pain, suffering, shock and fear. The heads are created from imaginary representation of black bodies, mimics of volunteers from the Diaspora, children and the community.
The Circle – is used by a diviner known as a Babalowoo priest whos interprets the will of the gods using divination of what he hears from the spiritual realm. He helps an individual or community to see what is in store for them in their day-to-day lives. Items like cowrie shells are thrown into the circle. Babalawo in West Africa literally means ‘father of the mysteries’ in the Yoruba language. It is a spiritual title that denotes a high priest of the Ifá oracle.
Workshop – Throughout the year installations are being sculptured by Kwame, artists and other workers. During the year ancestral veneration ceremony, art workshops, seminars, parades and camping have taken place. The museum is open every day, for more information contact (00233) 020 093 2148. Check out social media platforms @osramba_media @kwameakoto
Many sculptures are spread out within the grounds.
The History Wall is 100m representing Love, Activisim and Healing.
‘The Blank Slate‘ sculpture was unveiled on 7th August 2021.
“As with so many sites and communities the future is a blank slate and open door” from the book The Trayvon Generation by Elizabeth Alexander.
The Bell – At the end of the tour is a bell which you ring if you believe you have learnt something. Whilst on the sacred grounds we called upon our Ancestors, poured libation for our mothers strength within us.
Our-story and culture plays a critical part in shaping our identity and journey that we are survivors spiritually and physically having been through so many twist and turns.
Bless Sister E