GHANA TEXTILE // ADRIEN SAUVAGE DRAWS INSPIRATION FROM THE ASAFO FLAG

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The town of Cape Coast, Ghana, is alive with flags – they flutter in the wind in the fishing harbour and are used by the local Asafo groups in their traditional dances. The unique print, draws on Adrien Sauvage’s Ghanaian heritage. The pattern is Sauvage’s take on traditional Asafo flags, produced by the Fante people of Ghana and used to express identity and define territory.

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About Asafo
Flag Asafo companies serve political, religious and civic functions. These centuries-old traditional military institutions are particularly strong among the Fante, an Akan group of south-central Ghana. Flags and banners are typically emblazoned with words and images linked to proverbs and to specific events in a company’s history. Understanding such messages conveyed in asafo regalia requires specialized knowledge and literacy, abilities linked to power and authority. 
The use of Roman script reflects Africa’s centuries of interaction with the West. During the colonial period (late 19th century to circa 1960), Western authorities imposed European languages and literacy in matters of government, religion and the economy to foster their ideas and legitimize their domination. This flag demonstrates how Twi-speaking peoples employed Roman script for their own purposes, namely, to display the authority connected with a mastery of multiple languages and scripts.
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Image Credit: Adrien Sauvage
Asafo Flag images – Google Images
Via Shadders Africa.

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