Free Shipping on $20 Orders | Code SUMMER

NOVICA Artisan Stanley Kennedy Ahia

Stanley Kennedy Ahia

I was born on August 5, 1971 in Accra. My friends describe me as friendly man, just and very open. They say I always accept my faults and shortcomings. I don't like arguments.

When I was young, my father used to decorate our house with works of art. He was a painter back then and my interest for painting came out. After a while, I switched to wood carving. I was taught by a gentleman from an antique boutique and I have also taught my wife and son.

"I continue going to workshops and I was taught how to use quality materials for my work. I also read more art books and researched on the Internet. I went to local fairs to further enlighten myself.

"I love my work but my favorite part of is my unique finishing and also the colors I use. I get my inspiration from the natural things around me. Starting on my own was tough. I gathered my courage and organized myself despite all the challenges. I set up a workshop in my house and requested loans to buy materials. I work with family members — my wife does the polishing, and my son also helps her.

"Of all the difficult moments in my life, but worst was when I could no longer export my work because sales simply collapsed. By then, I was a member of a merchandise company and they gave repeat orders to we artisans listed in their files. Their office was located in the World Trade Center and, after the towers came down, they lost all their files and the orders stopped coming.

"All of a sudden, it was difficult to get money to work. I was really devastated; it was a hard time for me. It even brought some cracks in my marriage and family. I began carving and looking for new ways to sell my designs. I can say I have overcome those times by using new innovations and proactive measures in marketing my work.

"Once, I went to an exhibition without knowing much about it. Normally, one would have to register and sign forms before the show to be allowed to participate. I forgot all about that and went to the exhibition grounds. I was sacked. My wife and I had to plead with the agent to give us a chance. After a while, they let me register and we laughed over it.

"I hope that Novica will help me be seen internationally and help us sell our designs. My dream is to become successful and be able to create jobs in my community."