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Suro Nipa: Exploration of Humanity and the Environment

Welcome to a journey of contemplation and insight at the National Museum, where the exhibition “Suro Nipa” awaits. Inspired by the Akan adage “Suro Nipa na gyae osaman,” the exhibition invites patrons to reconsider their relationship with the environment, emphasizing the collective responsibility of mankind in the face of environmental challenges.


Decoding “Suro Nipa”


“Suro Nipa” translates to “Fear Man” in Akan, urging us to prioritize the impact of human actions over supernatural fears. The full adage, “Suro Nipa na gyae osaman,” stresses the importance of fearing man more than ghosts or spirits. The exhibition tackles this adage head-on, offering a nuanced exploration of environmental degradation as a man-made crisis.


Shifting Perspectives: Save Mankind, Not Just the Environment


One of the central themes of “Suro Nipa” is a paradigm shift from the conventional narrative of saving the environment to a more encompassing goal—saving mankind. This transformation of language serves as a call to action, redirecting our focus to the interconnectedness of environmental issues with the fate of humanity.


Here, artist Martin Keil challenges us to reconsider our role in environmental degradation. Rather than viewing the environment as a separate entity in need of saving, “Suro Nipa” prompts us to recognize that the environment will endure and evolve, with or without mankind. The consequences of our actions, whether failures or successes, rest squarely on human shoulders, emphasizing the absence of a mythical savior or hero. This profound realization forces us to confront our individual and societal responsibilities towards nature.


The Force of Human Community and Connection


“Suro Nipa” doesn’t merely dwell on the gloom of environmental challenges; it celebrates the strength and power inherent in human community and connection. By highlighting this force as the driving factor shaping our reality, the exhibition instills hope for a brighter and more sustainable future. Keil’s artwork serves as a testament to the potential within collective action, showcasing the transformative power of united human efforts.


Meet Martin Keil: A Fusion of Academic and Creative Expertise


Berlin-based multidisciplinary artist Martin Keil serves as the visionary behind “Suro Nipa.” With a background rooted in fine art studies across Mexico, Spain, and Germany, Keil brings a unique perspective to the Ghanaian art scene. Since September 2022, he has been living and working in Ghana, enriching the artistic landscape and contributing to the academic realm as a lecturer at the Art Department of the University of Education in Winneba.


Keil’s extensive experience as a practicing artist since 1996, collaborating with artists worldwide, positions his artwork at the intersection of art and social reality. His creations serve as an honest and transparent lens, offering viewers a glimpse into the unspoken truths that permeate society.



In conclusion, “Suro Nipa” is more than an exhibition; it is a call to action. It challenges us to rethink our relationship with the environment, urging us to fear the consequences of our own actions rather than mythical entities. The celebration of human community and connection offers a beacon of hope, emphasizing the transformative potential within collective efforts.


Let the canvases speak to you, prompting introspection and inspiring conversations that transcend the gallery walls. Join us on this intellectual journey, and together, let’s embark on a path towards a more conscious and sustainable coexistence with the environment.

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