The diverse culture of Ivory Coast, a coastal West African country bordered by Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Guinea, is exemplified by a multitude of ethnic groups, events, festivals, music, and art.
Among the Akan-speaking peoples of southern Ghana and adjacent Côte d’Ivoire, ritual pottery and figurative terracottas are used in connection with funeral practices that date at least to the 1600s. Some of these traditions continued to the 1970s
Bini kouassi Arnaud is an ambassador of Akan culture, cultural promoter, traditional dancer, drummer, and actor. He’s a general commissioner for FPCA (Federation for the promotion of African cultures) and a member of the large cultural family La Federation of Cultural and Artistic Societies of the World (Singapore).
Born in the royal family in Assuefry in the region of Gontougo in the area of Transua Assuefry, a very beautiful city of culture and tourism. His father, Mr. Bini koffi Tah is a planter and his mother, Affia Rosalie (housewife) His childhood in Assuefry alongside the great men of culture who has inspired and motivated him to imbibe the African culture from his school life and after elementary school, he took the competition and was admitted to the LEA (high school of artistic education) at INSAAC in Abidjan
In this Interview with African Development Magazine, Kouassi speaks about his love for African culture, his experience, challenges, and lifestyle as an African traditional dancer.
Below are excerpts:
Promoting African traditional culture and dancing has been your priority, what is the motivation and challenges?
Firstly, it should be noted that I am from the royal family and culture is first and foremost our identity. The issue of promoting cultural heritage and production in Africa is a crucial issue for the future. Culture is made known through the constitution and laws of a people.
The diversity of cultural values is subject to ways of life. And many people have turned their backs on this culture that expresses our identity How to get out of our lethargy as a culturally alienated men when we know that in Africa, we still despise national cultural riches and we remain indifferent to them while waiting for the Western public to recognize some of them and that we then hasten to consecrate and worship?
It is a long and difficult task, but let’s believe in ourselves first and stay what we are. And with Bini kouassi Arnaud, let’s say: African, “Become what you are even if your culture is threatened by current problems which it cannot do without. The main thing is to control them in order to better circumvent them. And this beautiful culture is endangered, that’s what pushes me to revive this beautiful culture
Federation of World Culture and Arts Society (Singapore) appointed you as a Global Honorary Advisor; tell us your experience, and major responsibilities?
I thank this great cultural federation for the trust it is a great pride for the whole of Africa. Regarding my experience, is that Africa itself has a richness and importance that some Africans ignore we have values of the rich values that embody us and it is her that makes my particularity. A person’s experience is what he has in him or what he received as traditional education.
African ethnic groups and tribes have customs and traditions that are unique to their culture. What do you like about African Culture?
First of all, it is to promote this culture and to give importance to this culture and it must remain natural and cultural. We must give importance and consideration to each culture of each people
In tourism, we have aspects of tourism like educational tourism, religious tourism, medical tourism which area can Africa be on a selling point of tourism to the world especially Cote d’Ivoire?
The strength of a country is culture and tourism … and tourism is very, very important and Africa has several tourist places on every level, now it is up to us to know how to value them. I think I’ll always be available to hire to showcase these riches
Will you consider the establishment of the African school of Creative Arts, Fashion, and Music as a way to reduce unemployment in Africa?
Yes, the most important thing is to save this wealth and to teach it in the end not to lose it and it is placed that future generations (our children and grandchildren) will lose to know their cultures and they will allow several young people to d ‘have jobs and we will have unemployment reduction in Africa. We must create several schools and art houses to safeguard our culture.
What can you say about Yoruba culture?
It must be meant that Africa itself has a very beautiful, rich, and unique culture and its valuable virtues make us a cultural pride. and every culture is better and rich. I love this beautiful Yoruba culture because is very rich and noble as that of the Akan culture. It is a pride for Africa and I personally used to say it, Africa remains and remains the mother of arts, culture, and tourism in the world. I think that one day I will be in Nigeria for Cultural sharing and passing by I greet his majesties, the kings who are the pride of the Nigerien culture and his excellence the President of the Republic of Nigeria, his Minister of Culture, and all the Nigerien brothers and sisters.
African Development Magazine would like to be part of your team reporting your activities, promoting your brand, cultural tourism promotion for Cote d’Ivoire; would you consider partnering with us and what will be your commitment to ADM?
First of all, I would like to thank Africa Development Magazine for everything they do for artists. It will be a great pleasure to work with
Amazing memories are unforgettable; can you share with us the most amazing memory?
Yes, real memories
What advice would you give the younger ones?
What I can give as advice, culture is our identity and we must safeguard this culture and each young person must be the ambassador of his culture
Thank you for sharing with us.
Thank you too.