Evergreen Ghana Series

Series based on social and political issues plaguing the country, i.e. control of natural resources and European influence as well as Asian, water, electricity along with corruption just to name a few. Works available for sale/prints for sale

Puppet Chonlo (Teacher)

The Puppet Chonlo ( The Puppet master)

Latex acrylic, aerosol, gold leaf, newspaper article on wood

By Dawn Tree

The silhouette of a white hand is center with red paint in the form of a string connected to a chart of zeros and ones, which represents bits, in order for a computer to work there are signals sent to the computer—0 for false/off and 1 represents true/on, this is called binary code. In the painting this simply represents the internet and the string is connected to the white hand – anybody not African profiting off Africa. The far background is mostly black and there are gold stars in the background, representing Black Ghanaian stars, Ghanaians. Really black people in general. Atop the hand you see 5 red ants and this is to represent the work ethic and character— they work fast, hard and organized, it is also said that once they are close to each other they know what the other is thinking and feeling. Two articles are placed up top, taken from the Ghanaian publication the daily graphic published Aug 13, 2019, one speaks about core values we should all have kindness, cleanliness, truthfulness, honesty, etc and the other talks about a proposed communication tax, which would increase the cost of already poor service of the cell phone networks. This is an ode to poor resources and yet continued economic profiting in the name of black suffrage. The painting is also up to interpretation so feel free to explore your mind.

Lion Chonlo (Teacher)

Lion Chonlo  (The Lion teacher)

Gold leaf, latex acrylic, aerosol on wood

By Dawn Tree

One part of this painting is very obvious, the lion, but I want to focus on the skyline, which is blue and it hosts a white hand that appears as a whirlwind pointing toward the lower level of dirt and green. If you look closely the brown represents layers of dirt and black figures digging for minerals, gold in this case. Gold leaf and yellow latex acrylic paint represent the gold. There is a trail of red, which represents harm

or blood connected to American currency $ and the European currency €. There is also a black man halfway out of the dirt and entering into the sky on the far right but he isn’t all the way out because one, he’s alone. This can represent some African leaders who don’t economically represent the people or scammers who can’t totally be free because they are stealing/lying. The lion represents the black race, the black

woman and man. One eye is laced with gold leaf to represent royalty and it takes a certain eye of understanding to see it. The painting is also up to interpretation so feel free to explore your mind.

Tree Vision

Tree Soul

By Dawn Tree

Medium: latex acrylic, aerosol on wood

 

Trees adorn this beautiful country (Ghana) and you can enjoy them much more when you leave the city (places like Accra, Tema). Mountains covered in lush green flora and trees meet you at your front door in more remote areas like Koforidua, Akosombo, Somanya and many more cities, regions. So I’ve added an electrical power line, representing the inconsistency of the electrical system here. The voltage is liable to go up/down anytime and shock you, spoil your electrical devices. Lights out is something that has shown me much patience. It’s not good for progress though. Even major cities like Accra deal with up to 48 hours of power outage. Sure you can have a generator but that comes with extra fuel costs. Solar power is a solution. Also One tree is being cut down, which there are cases of selling timber to other countries illegally and there is yellow paint representing lightening, striking that force of self interest down. More trees brings fresh air, a more balanced eco-system for the animals, people, water, everything. Under the trees there are blue designs representing water. The water tap could be closed anywhere from a couple hours to a whole week. One must have a surplus of water, rely on rain water to survive; serious problem for a country that has million-dollar property listings in Accra. The trees also have eyes and faints hands reaching toward the sky. Trees clean the air, restore balance, provide nutrients through mango, citrus, lime herbal medicines. They are rooted to see all in the forest.

The Warrior Way

The Warrior Way

By Dawn Tree

Medium: latex acrylic, aerosol, gold leaf on wood

 

The great Queen Mother, Yaa Asantewaa of Ejisu in the Ashanti Empire was/is said to have been stronger than a man. When Prempah I the king of Asante and her grandson were exiled by the British to Seychelle, East Africa there was a meeting among the chiefs. Many were scared, none of them wanted to fight back so Yaa Asantewaa stood and said these famous words:

 

Now I have seen that some of you fear to go forward to fight for our King. If it were in the brave days of Osei TutuOkomfo Anokye, and Opoku Ware, leaders would not sit down to see their King taken away without firing a shot. No white man could have dared to speak to a leader of the Ashanti in the way the Governor spoke to you this morning. Is it true that the bravery of the Ashanti is no more? I cannot believe it. It cannot be! I must say this, if you the men of Ashanti will not go forward, then we will. We the women will. I shall call upon my fellow women. We will fight the white men. We will fight till the last of us falls in the battlefields.

 

She was chosen to be the war-leader for the 1900 fight to protect the Golden Stool and the Asante legacy. This is the only example of a woman given the role in Asante history. She took over the British fort, held some hostage, ended up having to eat rats because of the lack of food but once her granddaughter was captured she surrendered and was sent to Seychelles. He soldiers continued to hold their ground and the Victory was still won because the golden stool was not taken. She died in 1921.

 

This painting depicts Yaa Asantewaa with a gun, as an archived photo of her which can be found on google shows her with. There are British soldiers embarking on the Asante/Gold coast. There is also a soldier under Asantewaa’s command standing and front and center is the royal Golden stool. The Golden stool even has it’s own stool as no one is permitted to sit on it. This stool is said to have been summoned by the spiritual priest Okomfo Anokye where is came down and landed on Osei Tutu’s lap, deeming him the King of the Ashante Kingdom.

Forever Kinky II

Forever Sun/Forever Kinky II

By Dawn Tree

Medium: latex acrylic, aerosol, gold leaf on wood

This represents the black man/woman who is holistically themselves. This piece promotes authenticity from the womb. People of the African diaspora naturally have kinky, coarse hair. It grows wild at times, long, up and often times society is not affirming of the natural beauty of African diaspora people. As I travel around Ghana I even see children with weave in their hair. I saw a small baby once that couldn’t walk having a wig on. A wig? Period, but in this heat. The baby was visibly sweating. I see shops with packs and packs of straight Brazilian hair. The hair of the person in the painting keeps going to the point where it even grows off the painting. This is the concept of letting your hair grow with no worries or shame. Similar to Rastafarians act of not cutting their hair but this is obviously an afro, let it grow! There is a circle in the background, which represents the sun, it has gold leaf engrained in it with nails dipped in yellow paint. It is known that the sun makes melanin stronger, which even affirms the pineal gland, which is in the brain. So because of the sun, black people are stronger.

True Blue

True Blue

By Dawn Tree

Medium: latex acrylic, aerosol, paper, found crabs, shells, pure water plastic, rubber plastic, chain link on wood

 

Sanitation is a huge problem in Ghana. Throwing trash on the ground is culture. Peeing outside is culture. Culture that needs to be broken. It is heightening diseases. Have you heard Rwanda is the cleanest country in Africa?

 

Well I’ve created a scape of the beach, where you can find wayyyy tooo much trash, trash that is deeply embedded in the sand and floating in the ocean. Participating in beach clean ups like Togbe Ghana’s monthly clean up is a start but I’ve learn the gutter system is a large reason why the trash is pushed to the beach. I find more white people/women at the beaches also, I’m sure because of the cooler weather. Right with them you find the rastaman. I’ve noticed far more rastas (loc’d hair, not sure if they’re Jah fearing) but smoke cigarettes at the beach. Tobacco is considered a poison, literally. Herb on the other hand is a natural flower. What is the influence behind this? Also included is an image of a white Jesus, rather small compared to the ones I vividly see in tro tros, taxis, private car, private residences, schools, churches… EVERYWHERE. Large images of white Jesus, from my stint coming for 4 years I feel this heavily influences the decisions made in business, everyday interaction, self love… again EVERYTHING. If you think Jesus is white, when they come what do you think they’ll be doing? Kay the owner of Abajo said that when he was young his mother sent him to church and told him if he saw a white man, you’ve seen Jesus. There is a toilet and waste bin in the middle representing solutions and there is also an arrow leading from white Jesus to the waste bin, representing the mentality that needs to be quit in order to grow a more progressive and free Ghana. There are chain links from white Jesus to the ocean. The true Jesus/God should be linked to nature and the white Jesus is continuing to chain Ghanaians let alone those of the African Diaspora. Whew that was a lot.

Art available for purchase// Art viewable in Accra, Ghana at Abajo Culture + Art Gallery inside the Accra Art Center