Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

In European cultures, we cremate our dead or bury them in a simple pine box. But coffins are a lot fancier in Ghana, where the Ga people believe that life continues in another world after death, and they want it to carry on in style. Here are some stunning examples of Ghana's famous coffin art.

Top image: Coffin by Paa Joe, via Särge aus Ghana

These colorful figurative coffins below are made since 1945, when Ataa Oko, a local artist and art brut painter decided to take coffin art to a new level. A studio named Kane Kwei Carpentry Workshop was founded by Seth Kane Kwei in the 1950s and the number of fantasy coffin artists are constantly growing ever since.

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Image via Jean-Michael Rousset, 2010.

The first figurative coffin of Ghana, made by Kane Kwei in the 1950s for his grandmother

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Musée du Quai Branly)

A battleship-like coffin by Ataa Oko, c. 1960

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

A Nike sneaker, made in 1990 by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Brooklyn Museum and Neil R)

A Golden African Eagle, 2010, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in styleGhana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Jack Bell Gallery)

A Nikon F2 camera, 2011, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Jack Bell Gallery)

A Ghana Airways airplane, 2010, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Jack Bell Gallery)

A red fish, 2010, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Jack Bell Gallery)

A telephone coffin by Kudjoe Affutu, painted by his own sign painter named Cikle, 2009

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi)

An 1973 Porsche 911 2.7 R.S in color 'Baby Blue', made by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via African Colours)

A red rooster by Ataa Oko, 2009

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

Gas truck, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Eleanor Hartzell)

A lobster, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

An Alitalia airplane by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

A sandal coffin, made by Paa Joe and Regula Tschumi for the Kunstmuseum Berne, 2006

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

The Angry Crab by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via MediaMatic)

Lions by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in styleGhana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in styleGhana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Emilio Labrador, Holly Pierce and Saerge aus Ghana)

A Canon EOS camera by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via spinning jenny)

A car-shaped coffin by Daniel Mensah (also known as "Hello"), 2006

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

An 1964 Corvette

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in styleGhana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in styleGhana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Paa Joe/Facebook)

A key, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

A leopard by Kudjoe Affutu, 2010

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi)

A flying car in KLM colors

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Radio Nederland Wereldomroep)

A mouse

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via GhanaCoffin)

A Mercedes-Benz, 2010, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Jack Bell Gallery)

A pig

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Easy Track Ghana)

A cow, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

A red rooster by Paa Joe, 2006

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi)

Cocoa pod, 2010, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Jack Bell Gallery)

An open-end wrench

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via GhanaCoffin)

A DAF truck

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Radio Nederland Wereldomroep)

A hammer

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via spinning jenny)

A hen by Eric Kpakpo

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi)

A hen, made by Kudjoe Affuto, 2008

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

A bottle of beer by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via bookbird)

A blue truck with firewood

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Kudjoe Affutu/Facebook)

An elephant, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Lia/catface3)

An old Nokia phone, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Holly Pierce)

A leather shoe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style(via Scoophunters)

A ballpoint pen

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Easy Track Ghana)

The Holy Bible, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

Coca-Cola by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via John Nash and Emilio Labrador)

A pineapple, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Eleanor Hartzell)

A fire truck by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Easy Track Ghana)

A pepper, by Paa Joe

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Saerge aus Ghana)

The Centre Pompidou coffin, by Kudjoe Affutu, 2010

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi/Wikimedia Commons)

A crocodile, by Eric Kpakpo, 2013

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Regula Tschumi)

A lightbulb by Kudjoe Affutu, 2013

Ghana's coffin art lets people bury their loved ones in style

(via Kudjoe Affutu/Facebook)