Asafo flags, locally called "frankaa", are paraded on festive occasions by men's "military" companies among the Fante people of coastal Ghana. The imagery asserts the wealth and power of the company and challenges its rivals, often through an associated proverb. The flags were made from thin flimsy imported cloth and the effect of being hung outside for days at a time in all weathers and repeated use in parades tends to mean that older pieces are often quite battered with numerous marks, holes and patches. One can think of this damage as "battle scars" testifying to their authenticity. In fact flags with no damage at all are often copies made for sale to tourists. Pieces sold on Ebay and elsewhere on the net for prices in the low to mid 100s of US$ are almost without exception new copies or fakes made for sale to tourists or exported in bulk to dealers. For more information on how to distinguish fake from genuine flags see a post on my blog here. Due to the demand for these striking flags from European and American collectors since the 1990s genuine old flags in acceptable condition are now becoming extremely scarce - most of the pieces we have were collected a decade or more ago. Some of the flags below are more recent examples from the past two or three decades that we believe were made for local use rather than for sale - I look for pieces that have a quirky charm and visual flair rather than the repetitive formula and poor technique shown by tourist pieces. For all of them I give my best informed estimate of the likely production date. Full details of size and condition of each flag, together ordering information, can be found with a larger picture by clicking on the thumbnail images. As with all our cloths we guarantee a full refund (excluding shipping costs) if you are not satisfied with any order on receipt (but please take careful note of our comments on condition of these pieces before ordering.) We have more information on Asafo flags here.
|Asafo101: US$2250||Asafo102: US$2250||Asafo069: US$2250|
|Asafo103: US$1100||Asafo072: US$1800||Asafo073: US$1350|
|Asafo104: US$745||Asafo105: US$745||Asafo106: US$1100|
|Asafo078: US$1800||Asafo107: US$745||Asafo108: US$745|
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