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CHRIS KONEY: Light, Bright & the Mountain in full Prospect – The Stunning sight of Cape Town (+IMAGES)



After three amazing nights in the Free State, together with the other members of the 2017 SA Specialist experience, we made a three-hour road trip to Bloemfontein to catch a flight to the “Mother City”, a more commonly used nickname for Cape Town by locals.

Cape Town, which happens to be the oldest town in South Africa, is a port city that is situated on the country’s southwest coast and positioned on a peninsula just beneath the magnificent, imposing and popular Table Mountain.

After an hour and forty minute flight, we arrived in Cape Town and were welcomed in a grand but an unusual manner. Over thirty of the world’s most iconic bike brand, Harley Davidson together with professional riders lined up just outside of the arrival area of the airport waiting for us to hit town.

Cape Town has its own vibe – from the weather, mood of the people. Arriving from Clarens, it was in fact very obvious and effortless to try and identify the differences. Cape Town has a lot to offer tourists on any day and even for people who have previously visited the “Mother City”, it is always a totally new experience when they return to the city.

From the airport, we rode through the principal streets of Cape Town for almost an hour before settling at the Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront for a series of fun activities. From a good spot, you could see slowly rotating cable cars climb to the mountain’s flat top, sweeping views of the city, the busy harbour and boats. After all the fun on the day, we checked into the five-star Westin Grand hotel, next to the Cape Town Conventional Centre.

Designed by Adrian van der Vyver, the V&A Waterfront is a complex situated on the Atlantic shore, Table Bay Harbour. The 123 hectares (300 acres) area has been developed for mixed-use, with both residential and commercial real estate. The complex houses over 450 retail outlets, including fashion, homeware and curious, to jewellery, leather goods and audio-visual equipment. The V&A Waterfront still functions as a working harbour and fishing boats bring in fresh fish, and larger container ships are towed in by tugboats.

One of the major attractions at the V&A Waterfront is the Two Oceans Aquarium. There are over 3,000 new fishy friends who are swimming to meet your acquaintance such as, sharks, fishes, turtles and penguins. The aquarium raises environmental awareness through high-quality exhibits, conservation and education programs. The more fearless you are, you can attempt to do a shark dive in the I & J Predator Exhibit.

The Wheel of Excellence is another spectacle at the complex. You can get into the skies in one of the 36 fully-enclosed cabins on this 50m high, giant observation wheel (for R70/p). The 20-minute journey affords panoramic views of Cape Town, Paarl, Table Mountain and Robben Island. Feeling a bit flash, you can opt for a VIP cabin, complete with canapés and champagne for a true VIP treatment.

Cape Town caters to the nature lovers as much as the culture enthusiast and the hop-on-hop-off bus tour is a great start. The tour grants you the flexibility to explore the city according to your own itinerary for an inspiring introductory scene of Cape Town. At the foot of the Table Mountain sits Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, one of the nine national botanical gardens covering five of the South Africa’s six different biomes.

History buffs can head to the Castle of Good Hope to discover the oldest surviving colonial building in South Africa which was constructed in 1666 as a maritime replenishment stadium. Currently, the star-shaped structure houses the Castle Military Museum and the Iziko Museum of Cape Town.

Quad Biking also happens in Cape Town and I experienced the mountain trails. The quad bike trails take you through some of the rarest plants on earth and the off-road quad tours are perfectly designed for those with a sense of adventure and an appreciation for nature. A qualified field guide leads the quad biking tour group, offering interesting insights as you enjoy your off-road quad bike trail through the awesome scenery of this Western Cape region.

A visit to Cape Town is not complete without visiting a winery to have a wine tasting experience.    Cape Town is a favourite destination for wine connoisseurs from around the world with some of the best and oldest wine farms in the region can be found right in the city’s backyard. Cape Town is a world-renowned wine region, recognized internationally for its fine wines. While the Cape’s famed Winelands have spread to Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek and beyond, it all began in Constantia, quite literally Cape Town’s backyard. With a wine-making tradition that spans more than 300 years, the Constantia Valley is the oldest wine-producing region in the Southern Hemisphere, its picturesque farms still produce world class and award-winning wines.

Our adventure came to an end at the Cool Runnings Toboggan Family Park. Being the only toboggan track in Africa, Cool Runnings comes with its sunny skies and warm temperatures. The toboggans definitely don’t run on the traditional snow and ice, Instead, Cool Runnings toboggans run on a stainless steel track, each seating one or two people. Your ride starts with a pull up a steep grassy slope by a hook at the bottom of your toboggan.

From there, your sledge is released and you will go down the track with seventeen corners, S-bends and a tunnel. You can control your own speed with a break, but adrenaline junkies can easily reach up to a whopping 40km an hour. The sledge will automatically slow down as it comes into the docking station, so you have nothing to worry about except having a good time.



Chris Koney



Arts and Tourism Writers Association of Ghana inaugurated!



The Arts and Tourism Writers Association of Ghana (ATWAG) has been inaugurated at a ceremonyheld at the Accra Tourism Information Centre (ATIC) on Friday 2nd March, 2018.

The programme was attended by arts and tourism writers, radio and TV personalities and dignitaries from the arts, tourism and related fields.

In a short speech before he would inaugurate the ATWAG executive committee, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr. Akwasi Agyemang urged them to be bold in leading the group to achieve the objectives for which it was formed.

Also a past President of the Ghana Independent Broadcaster Association (GIBA), Mr. Agyemang noted that there would be difficult times for such an association, but the executive should not give up.

There was also induction of the executive committee, which was elected on in December. The swearing of oath of office was led and administered by a judge of the Circuit Court, Her Honour Ruby Aryeetey.

The following people took the oath and were inducted into office as executive of ATWAG:

William Asiedu (Managing Editor, Daily Heritage Newspaper) – President

Francis Doku (General Manager, MG Digital Limited at Media General Group) – Vice President

Mic Yamoah (Flex newspaper) – Secretary

Frank Owusu (Hitz FM) – Treasurer

Mustapha Nii Okai Inusah ( – Organiser

Kwame Dadzie (Citi FM) – Public Relations Officer

David Mawuli ( – Research Officer

Sandra Ankobiah (Broadcaster and Lawyer) – Legal Adviser

Makeba Boateng (Media and PR Practitioner) – Women’s Commissioner

  The ATWAG Executive Committee has a four-year mandate to run the association after which elections will be held.

The President of the association, Mr. William Asiedu, in his speech thanked the members for reposing trust in him and promised to work conscientiously towards the well-being of the association.

Nanabanyin Dadson, former Editor of Graphic Showbiz and chairman for the occasion expressed his joy at the formation of ATWAG and urged the executive and members to work with other allied associations and groups to meet the objectives for which it was formed.

Also present at the programme were ace music producer Fred Kyei Mensah, gospel artiste Dr. Wegeiwor Asewer, reps from the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) and a representative of the Rector of the Ghana Institute of Journalism.

The Arts and Tourism Writers Association of Ghana (ATWAG) is an association of Ghanaian arts writers/journalists and media workers. ATWAG seeks to promote arts, tourism and culture reporting in Ghana while developing the professional capacity and the welfare of its members.

ATWAG is also aimed at promoting co-operation and collaboration among its members and players.



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Arts Growth Foundation Ghana (AGFG) poised to promote Ghana’s Creative Arts Sector



Practitioners in the Ghanaian creative arts industry and management members of the Arts Growth Foundation Ghana (AGFG), over the weekend, reiterated their commitment to partner with all relevant institutions and key stakeholders to revamp, strategically position and promote the Ghanaian creative arts sector.

AGFG is a registered non-governmental organization based in Accra and seeks to stimulate discussions, initiate concepts for the general development of the Ghanaian Arts and Entertainment industry through various schemes. These include building the capacity of practitioners within the Ghanaian arts space as well as creating cross-cultural experiences for Ghanaian arts practitioners.

Addressing audience at a stakeholder and media gathering held at the Coconut Grove Regency hotel in Accra, the Executive Director of AGFG, Mr. Jonathan Christopher Koney (popularly known as Chris Koney) emphasized the need to get all players within the sector to advocate for the well-being of practitioners to lead to the development of the sector.

“Marketing Ghanaian arts extensively and building of synergies between Ghanaian arts practitioners and their foreign counterparts is very important to move our creative arts sector to the next level.  Founded on the conviction that the arts and creative media can awaken and release human potential in profound and unique ways, we will not relent in our effort to achieve that”, Mr Koney added.

He further stated that the Arts Growth Foundation Ghana as a body is keen on establishing a dependable relationship among individuals, communities, artists, and organizations working to create vibrant and sustainable approaches to human prosperity”.

Membership of the AGFG is open to everyone that operates in the creative arts space such as musicians, actors and actresses, painters and artisans, poets, spoken word performers, content creators, talent managers, fashion entrepreneurs and sporting personalities.

The most recent success of the organization was in 2017 when the organization under the leadership of Mr Chris Koney worked with the Netherlands Embassy in Ghana to execute at Orange week celebrations at which Ghanaian musician Bisa Kdei was celebrated. The organization also helped with the rollout of the “Afrocentric Collection” by Ghanaian clothing line Aba & Thursday in Ghana and the United Kingdom.

More information about Arts Growth Foundation Ghana can be accessed at

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Tourism Minister meets PRESS!



Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Catherine Afeku, yesterday January 29, disclosed during an interaction with the press, that Ghanaians can expect to see a channel dedicated solely to tourism soon.

Tourism TV, according to her, will be geared toward consolidating our rich culture. Other channels to be expected, in her outfit’s move to give the creative arts space a facelift include Daddy Lumba TV, and Agya Koo TV.

She also announced that over 30 locations have been picked out for various projects relating to her sector, pending a review of a draft Legislative Instrument (LI) by parliament for commencement.

Touching on other initiatives being rolled out by the ministry, she spoke of a world-class cocoa museum to be established at Mampong Akuapem in memory of the late Dr. Tetteh Quarshie, as well as a paragliding school to serve the annual festival in the Eastern Region.

In March this year, Accra hosts the West African Integrated Forum in March in Accra, to identify a common denominator to facilitate tourism promotion within the sub-region.

Video Credit: GhanaWeb

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I will turn Kwahu into a tourist centre – Hon. Bryan Acheampong



The Member of Parliament for Abetifi, Bryan Acheampong, has promised  to turn -the area into a world-class tourist centre, and an affordable alternative to such destinations as Dubai, France, and London.

He made this known during the 3 day annual “Bliss On Hills” Concert held on the Chief’s Palace Street, during the just ended Christmas celebrations.

The MP opined that, such a move will create jobs for the inhabitants of the area as well as provide an option to Ghanaians and foreigners to organise,parties, conferences, and other social activities in the area.

The “Bliss On Hills” concert treated thousands  to a three- day show dedicated to various genres of local music: Highlife, Gospel, Afrobeat, Reggae, and Dancehall .

In all, 30 Ghanaian musicians including Nana Ampedu, Ambolley, Bessa Simons, Shattawale, Stoneboy, Ebony Reigns, Gifty Osei, S.P. Kofi Sarpong, and Ernest Opoku performed at the concert.

According to the event organiser, Kwesi Ernest, the concert gave the inhabitants of the area quality entertainment during the holidays. He also promised to make the event perennial.

The event was organised by Media Excell in partnership with Evolution.and financed by the Member of Parliament for the Abetifi Kwahu constituency, Hon. Bryan Acheampong.



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50 Most Influential Young Ghanaians of 2017 announced – SEE FULL LIST!



Winners of Avance Media’s  50 Most Influential Young Ghanaians of 2017 has been announced. Comprising winners across the fields of business, entertainment, media, sports, leadership, lifestyle among others.

Musicians Stonebwoy, Shatta Wale, and Sarkodie, Asamoah Gyan, GH One’s Berla Mundi, Peace Hyde are among personalities named on the list.

The scheme is put together in partnership with,, Abjel Communications, WatsUp TV,, My Naija Naira, The YCEO, Dream Ambassadors Foundation GH, CliqAfrica, Pulse Ghana, Africa Feeds, News Africa and CELBMD Africa.

See winners in the various categories below:

  • Business – Nana Appiah Mensah, Zylofon Media & MenzGold Ghana
  • Entertainment – Stonebwoy, Musician
  • Law & Governance – Kow Essuman, Lawyer & Office of the President of Ghana
  • Leadership & Civil Society – Gideon Danso, Empowerment Worship Center
  • Lifestyle – Ameyaw Debrah, Blogger
  • Media – Nana Aba Anamoah, GhOne TV
  • Personal Development & Academia – Brian Amoateng– Brian Amoateng Outreach Ministries
  • Science & Technology – Godwin Martey– Websoft Solutions
  • Social Enterprise & Philanthropy – Ama Duncan, The Fabulous Woman Network
  • Sports – Asamoah Gyan, Kayserispor FK

Below is the list of Avance Media’s 50 Most Influential Young Ghanaians in 2017

  • Kow Essuman (Lawyer)
  • Gideon Danso (Empowerment Worship Center)
  • Brian Amoateng (Brian Amoateng Outreach Ministries)
  • Kojo Oppong Nkrumah (MP)
  • Ameyaw Debrah (Blogger)
  • Nana Appiah Mensah (Zylofon Media)
  • Nana Aba Anamoah (GhOne TV)
  • Godwin Martey (Websoft Solutions)
  • Stonebwoy (Musician)
  • Ibrahim Mustapha (Public Speaking Institute)
  • Asamoah Gyan (Kayserispor FK)
  • David Asare Asiamah (Agro Mindset Ltd)
  • Ama Duncan (The Fabulous Woman Network)
  • Sarkodie (Musician)
  • Berla Mundi (GhOne TV)
  • Caritas Aryee (Tatas and Friends Foundation)
  • Jeff Bassey (Graduate Training Institute)
  • Dede Ayew (West Ham United)
  • Nii Kotei Dzani (Council of State)
  • Sesinam Dagadu (Snoocode)
  • Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa (MP)
  • Elijah Amoo Addo (Food For All Africa)
  • Christian Atsu (Newcastle United)
  • Albert Kusi (LEC Foundation)
  • Seth Kwame Boateng (Multimedia Group)
  • Peace Hyde (Forbes Africa)
  • Hamamat Montia (Model)
  • Richmond Kwame Frimpong (Beige Academy)
  • Senyo Hosi (COBD)
  • Kwadwo Asamoah (Juventus)
  • Elorm Beenie (Blogger)
  • Shatta Wale (Musician)
  • Lydia Forson (Actress)
  • Senyuiedzorm Awusi Adadevoh (Photographer)
  • Alexander Afenyo-Markin (MP)
  • Regina Agyare (Soronko Foundation)
  • Laud Anthony Basing (Incas Diagnostic Services Limited)
  • Akwasi Frimpong (Athlete)
  • Nicholas Bortey (Liranz)
  • Philip Mensah (OmniBank Ghana)
  • Kane Mani (Origgin)
  • Abigail Ashley (UTV Ghana)
  • Kosi Yankey (NBSSI)
  • Roberta Annan (Roberta Annan Consulting)
  • Wiyaala (Musician)
  • Francisca Oteng Mensah (MP)
  • Derrydean Dadzie (DreamOval Ltd)
  • Ivy Barley (Developers in Vogue)
  • Ebenezer Nana Yaw Donkor (Blogger)
  • Peter Akai Anum (HOSA Awards)


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Sounds from the City

Paintings by Ghana’s Lynette Yiadom-Boakye sell for 1 MILLION DOLLARS



The more people willing to buy a work, the more convincing the argument that the work is here to stay. When that artist’s pieces begin to find a new life in the secondary market, the more you can be sure that his or her work is a good investment.

A Consideration like No Other, 2011, by Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.Source: Sotheby’s

After taking stock of last month’s contemporary auctions, anyone could look to the market of London-born Lynette Yiadom-Boakye and reasonably conclude that her work has crossed over, in market terms, from “up and coming” to something more significant.

Blockbuster Results

Over two days, three of the painter’s lush oil paintings depicting fictional black characters came to auction at Sotheby’s. One, The Hours Behind You, 2011, which is more than eight feet wide and depicts a group of dancers dressed in white, was estimated to sell for $250,000 to $350,000. It sold for $1.575 million.

The next day, two more came on the block at Sotheby’s. The first, estimated between $80,000 and $120,00, sold for just under $340,000, while the second, estimated between $100,000 and $150,000, sold for $118,750.

Oral Chapters, 2010, by Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.Source: Sotheby’s

“Only five or six years ago you could still buy one of these canvases for less than 10,000 pounds [$13,476], says Hannah O’Leary, the head of Sotheby’s modern and contemporary African Art department, a division that was created last year. “Certainly, in the last 12 to 24 months, we’ve had a surge of people desperate to acquire her pieces.”

Call it a market trend or call it simply a long-overdue recognition of heretofore overlooked artists, but Yiadom-Boakye, who was born in 1977, joins a select group of peers from the African diaspora, including Njideka Akunyili Crosby and Kerry James Marshall, whose paintings have recently surged past $1 million at auction.

“She’s a great artist, first of all,” says O’Leary. “But the fact that she is a woman, she is black, she is of the African diaspora—these are all things that the [art] market is turning toward.”

Existing Market

It’s not as if Yiadom-Boakye has been hiding or is unknown to many in the art world since she graduated from the Royal Academy in London’s MFA program in 2003.

An installation view of the solo show “Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Under a Song for a Cipher” at the New Museum in New York, which ran from May 3 through September 3, 2017.Photographer: EPW STUDIO

While her style has evolved over the past 10 years, Yiadom-Boakye has consistently painted large-scale oil portraits of people she paints from her imagination. Drawing on established stylistic precedents—Manet and Goya are often evoked—she developed a distinct aesthetic with deep, saturated colors and dynamic figures.

“She’s an extraordinary painter,” says Tamsen Greene, a senior director at New York’s Jack Shainman gallery, which has represented Yiadom-Boakye since 2009. “She’s made her own, unique style, but she uses this classic, incredibly formal visual language that draws people in.”

By 2007, Yiadom-Boakye had been included in an array of group shows, including the Tate Liverpool Biennial and the Saatchi Gallery’s Triumph of Painting Part 6, and in 2010 the Studio Museum in Harlem gave her a critically acclaimed solo show. She’s since been a subject of solo shows at the Serpentine Gallery in London (2015), the Kunsthalle Basel (2017), and the New Museum in New York (2017).

“Since the day we’ve started working with her, there’s been a great deal of demand,” says Greene. “We’ve always had to manage a wait list.”

That could partially be due to Yiadom-Boakye’s core group of prominent collectors, who have been vocal supporters of her career by lending her work to exhibitions whenever possible.

The Hours Behind You, 2011, by Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.Source: Sotheby’s.

Those collectors include former NBA player Elliot Perry and his wife Kimberly, the German hair-care heir Thomas Olbricht, the Belgian collecting couple Wilfried and Yannicke Cooreman, the Japanese industrialist Hiroshi Taguchi, and the American philanthropist and collector Pamela Joyner.

“The people who live with her work love it,” says Greene. “It’s not rare that someone acquires a work and then immediately wants to acquire another one.”


For all that, it took nearly a decade for a single painting by Yiadom-Boakye to come up to auction, when her work Politics, which was made in 2005, was put on sale at Sotheby’s in London in 2010 with an estimate of 15,000 to 20,000 pounds. It sold for 52,500 pounds with premium.

The next day at Christie’s London, another one of her paintings sold for 146,000 pounds above a high estimate of 50,000 pounds, and the day after that, also at Christie’s London, another painting sold for 116,553 pounds over a high estimate of 15,000 pounds.

“We, along with her London gallery, do everything we can to place her work in collections that are going to be good stewards,” says Greene. “A lot of the works that go to auction predate her work with either of her galleries.” (The three works that came to Sotheby’s in November were from the estate of the collector Jerome Stern, who died in April.)

An installation view of the show at the New Museum.Photographer: EPW STUDIO

O’Leary credits Yiadom-Boakye’s secondary-market breakthrough to the New Museum show earlier this year. “She was really in the London auctions,” she says. “But we can attribute a lot of her success to her newly raised profile in the U.S.”

The inevitable question—whether her new status in the art market can be sustained—has already been answered, Greene says. “She’s not a new artist. She’s had important solo shows, and I don’t see why that would change,” she says.

“I think all the market frenzy is just a testament to the work.”

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