June 14, 2024
Artists

A Ghana toddler sets a world record as the youngest male artist. His mom says he just loves colors


Meet Ace-Liam Ankrah, a Ghana toddler who has set the record as the world’s youngest male artist.

His mother, Chantelle Kukua Eghan, says it all started by accident when her son, who at the time was 6 months old, discovered her acrylic paints.

Eghan, an artist and founder of Arts and Cocktails Studio, a bar that that offers painting lessons in Ghana’s capital, Accra, said she was looking for a way to keep her boy busy while working on her own paintings.

“I spread out a canvas on the floor and added paint to it, and then in the process of crawling he ended up spreading all the colors on the canvas,” she said.

And that’s how his first artwork, “The Crawl,” was born, Eghan, 25, told The Associated Press.

After that and with his mother’s prodding, Ace-Liam kept on painting.

Eghan decided to apply for the record last June. In November, Guinness World Records told her that to break a previous record, her son needed to exhibit and sell paintings.

She arranged for Ace-Liam’s first exhibition at the Museum of Science and Technology in Accra in January, where nine out of 10 of his pieces listed were sold. She declined to say for how much the paintings sold.

They were on their way.

Then, Guinness World Records confirmed the record in a statement and last week declared that “at the age of 1 year 152 days, little Ace-Liam Nana Sam Ankrah from Ghana is the world’s youngest male artist.”

Guinness World Records did not immediately respond to an Associated Press query about the previous youngest male artist record holder.

The overall record for the world’s youngest artist is currently held by India’s Arushi Bhatnagar. She had her first exhibition at the age of 11 months and sold her first painting for 5,000 Rupees ($60) in 2003.

These days, Ace-Liam, who will be 2 years old in July, still loves painting and eagerly accompanies his mom to her studio, where a corner has been set off just for him. He sometimes paints in just five-minute sessions, returning to the same canvas over days of weeks, Eghan says.

On a recent day, he ran excitedly around the studio, with bursts of energy typical for boys his age. But he was also very focused and concentrated for almost an hour while painting — choosing green, yellow and blue for his latest work-in-progress and rubbing the oil colors into the canvas with his tiny fingers.

Eghan says becoming a world record holder has not changed their lives. She won’t sell “The Crawl” but plans on keeping it in the family.

She added that she hopes the media attention around her boy could encourage and inspire other parents to discover and nurture their children’s talents.

“He is painting and growing and playing in the whole process,” she says.

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AP Africa news: https://apnews.com/hub/africa



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