Woman is Key® by Ken Gwira

Ken Gwira is a self-taught sculptor, designer, artist and humanitarian born in Sekondi-Takoradi; Ghana’s twin city. Ken Gwira has been carving professionally since 1981. His early education took him from Freetown, Sierra Leone to England and back to Ghana where in 1979, he received a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Ancient History and Religious Studies. He has created many one-of-a-kind wooden carvings and is best known for his signature furniture-art series known as Conversation Seat and for his philosophical carving, Woman is Key®.

Woman is the Key is an idea that should influence the next generation, help in the development of Africa and beyond. This thought alone could make a significant contribution to progress.”

Woman is Key® is an abstract design of a woman’s head viewed vertically – eye, nose, mouth and ear. However, when viewed horizontally it shows an old fashioned key depicting the past, and a modern design depicting the present. The ear can also be seen as a keyhole when looked at vertically – it gives a peek into the future.

With these senses in sync, we can  Touch  someone’s life for the better.

“The eyes for vision, the nose for detection, the mouth for communication and the ear for instruction. All purposed with one goal in mind: meaningful development and defense of all we hold dear.” Woman is Key®.

Over the decade, he has been featured and interviewed in several medias including the following:

  • The National Library of Poetry, USA
  • Article in West Africa Magazine
  • Article in Balafon, the in-flight magazine of Air Afrique
  • Interviewed by BBC
  • Interviewed by the Voice of America
  • Art focus in Black Ethnic Collectibles publication

Ken Gwira is also a talented poet. One of his poems, “Message of the Tree,” which he wrote to compliment one of his carvings of the same title, is published in Echoes of Yesterday by The National Library of Poetry, USA.

“I was a child who enjoyed drawing and painting in middle and high school but I did not pursue it in college. After a year as a teaching assistant at the university, I wanted to start a business making things. At 24 years old, I just knew I wanted to design something that would be a symbol for Africa and the world. Initially, I thought the answer was to mass produce designs in plastic. But back in 1981, the plastic industry in Ghana was not developed. So I chose wood as my material because it was plentiful. The rest is history.”

Ken Gwira is asking people all over the world what can be done to better the lives of women. That means a better life for everyone.


In your life what have you detected, that you can communicate as a vision and give direction to better women’s future? By so doing you can help touch the world.

Gwira’s works can be found in private collections all over the world.

Follow Ken Gwira

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