Hand Block Printing: Experimenting with Assorted Surfaces and Inks


  • George Kwame Fobiri Kumasi Technical University
  • Timothy Crentsil Kumasi Technical University
  • Solomon Marfo Ayesu
  • Rowena Fatchu Kansanba




Block printing, Assorted fabrics, Varied block surfaces, Printing inks, Print impression.


Block printing has gained attention in academic discourse over the years due to its primacy in the art of printing. This oldest method of printing which is believed to have originated from Asia is currently practiced globally. In Ghana, the art is locally known as Adinkra printing, which essentially rely on a natural dye called Adinkra Aduro and calabash as the chief block surface for printing. Despite the popularity gained by this traditional art, little has been explored with respect to block surfaces, fabrics and printing inks. The Adinkra Aduro which lacks a colour fastness property is printed only on woven cotton fabrics. With the art studio-based research method, this study sought to explore varied block surfaces on assorted fabrics with both water-soluble and water-insoluble printing inks to open the horizon of block printing in the Ghanaian context. The study revealed marvelous effects which could be achieved with other block surfaces apart from the calabash surface used by Ghanaian textiles artists for block printing. It is recommended that, the block printing sector of the Ghanaian textiles industry would extend their resources to varied block surfaces and printing inks if not the fabric, to broaden the scope of the art.







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