George Alfred Frempong
Hand-carved African masks and home décor in West Africa
"I work in sese wood which is carefully dried and seasoned. But my use of novel textures, such as jute sacks, hand-embossed aluminum plates, and local clay, differentiates my designs.""George Alfred Frempong is my name. I was born in January of 1975 in Aburi-Akwapim. My friends say I am friendly, kind and religious.
"I work as a woodcarver but I embellish my designs with other materials. I was an apprentice for three years in order to perfect my skills. I love all the colors and the uniqueness an artisan can achieve.
"I work in sese wood which is carefully dried and seasoned. But my use of novel textures, such as jute sacks, hand-embossed aluminum plates, and local clay, differentiates my designs. Nature is my inspiration.
"Once, when I was in school, I saw my girlfriend from afar. I watched her, never taking my eyes off her… until I fell into a gutter. My friends really laughed at me that day. But that's a result of teen romance.
"I was already working when my mum passed away. That was such a difficult time for me! I had to quickly sell my art work to organize for her funeral.
"Today, I have been able to teach this art to four people, so far. This has benefited my community, I feel, because these trainees will be able to make a living with this craft for their whole lives.
"My dream is to teach the up and coming young ones how to carve and create finished sculptures and home décor."