Original Tingatinga African Art

Traditional African Art

African Tingatinga Art is a unique style of painting. You will not see this style of painting anywhere else in the world. Although some artists are traveling and starting to take their art further a field. Tingatinga art is primarily produced and sold in East Africa, Tanzania.

You will never see massed produced Tingatinga Art. Traditional Tingatinga African Art can be described as folk art or abstract art. Often painting the Maasai in their bright colored cloth and abstract images of animals. The artists also paint stories about the AIDS virus, trying to make people more aware of the situation.

It all started with a man called Eduardo Saidi Tingatinga, born in 1932 in a village in southern Tanzania on the border of Mozambique. During the 1960s he established an art form that became associated with his homeland Tanzania.

Eduardo Saidi Tingatinga was a self taught painter, he only had 4 years of primary school education. He was just starting to receive recognition for his square board-paintings, when his life was cut short in 1972, unfortunately he was mistaken for a fleeing thief and fatally shot by the police.

Before he died he started to attracted young followers wanting to imitate his style.

Tingatinga art can be defined as painting on Masonite using enamel bicycle paint.Today Tingatinga thrives, being extremely popular with Europeans and Japanese and expanding around the globe.

Tingatinga African Art work is truly a unique style of painting.

Comments 25 comments

mikegriffis profile image

mikegriffis 7 years ago from Southern CA


I sell and have seen many different kinds of African art, but I have never seen African art quite like this. The painting is very beautiful and it sounds very interesting the way that its made. Great hub, thanks for the info. http://www.acaciawoodcarvings.com

liz 7 years ago

Wonderful painting. I love the colors in the artwork. For about a year now I have been importing Tingatinga to raise money for a girls school in Tanzania. You can check out the website at www.africaoncanvas.ca

Tania Bale 7 years ago

Hi Liz, thank you for your comment. It is a wonderful painting. African Art also raises funds for a variety of projects in Tanzania.

I wish you all the best with your school project in Tanzania.

Tana Bale


yvonne 7 years ago


I need to copy and paste an african art painting as soon as possible as I have to get the website out. It's for a hotel in Mwanza, Tanzania.

I'm basically requesting permission to put this on one of the walls - just for the website as the hotel is not yet completed.

Hoping to hear from you and would appreciate your consent.

THank you.


P.S. If you want I can send you a picture of the bed room. tks

becki 7 years ago

i would like to say how much this painting has helped me with my art homework!

it has really given me a good idea of how brilliant african art is !

but i still want to know one thing, how was this art composed and arranged?

Tania 7 years ago

Hi Becki, I am really glad this is helping you with your Art homework.

Tingatinga Art is a unique style of painting. The traditional method of how the artist paints is using enamel bicycle paint. Usually on canvas. Tingatinga art is primarily produced and sold from East Africa. This is where the artists get their inspiration as they are surrounded and live with the Maasai people.

There is a knew style of abstract art emerging which they paint on cloth.

I hope this helps and if you need more information please let me know.

Kind Regards

Tania Bale

Managing Director


Daniel Augusta 7 years ago

Hello Everybody,

There is an official website of Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society now. And also www.tingatinga.info is to recommend as it contains some useful information



tanb profile image

tanb 7 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hello Daniel, I have been to the Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society in Dar es Saalam a few times, I could spend days there looking at all the wonderful art work.

Thanks for the links.


becki 7 years ago

dear tanya

thankyou very much, that has helped me loads with the homework!

tanb profile image

tanb 7 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hi Becki, I am happy the peinting has been helpful with your homework.

All the best.



Daniel Augusta 7 years ago

Hello Tania, I think I have seen you in Cooperative. I am there every day so if you come over again let's have a chat. The cooperative is great, the paintings nice a people very friendly. But still Tingatinga is hard to promote, because few speak English, no one has email...Hope that the more we show Tingatinga on net and on exhibitions the more benefit for the whole art style and the artists.

tanb profile image

tanb 7 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hello Daniel, I will certainly be back in Oyster Bay at some stage. Not sure if it will be this year or not.

Do you have an email address so I can email you. People really like the Tingtinga Art and the Internet is the way to promote it world wide.

Look forward to chatting to you soon.


chloe 7 years ago

hey i really like this piece of art

and i would like to know who the artist is?

is he/she famous? thanks

tanb profile image

tanb 7 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hello, Yes this is a wonderful peice of art. This painting has been sold and I cant recall the name of the artist.

However I can tell you that the painting was painted in Aruhsa, Tanzania.

The Tingatimga shop in which this was painted was owned by a man named Jaffary Aussi.

Jaffary Aussi was one of Eduardo Saidi Tingatinga original students. Eduardo Saidi Tingatinga was and still is a very famous artist in the Tingatinga world.

Jaffary had a few of his own students painting at his shop. So one of Jaffary Aussi's students painted this peice. I could email the buyer of this piece if you like to get the name of the artist.

I must also mention Jaffary has recently passed away. He will be sadly missed.

If you would like to see a Video of Jaffary Aussi painting you can view that here and see the shop where this painting was painted.


Click on Meet An Artist

Thank you for your comment. I hope this was helpful.

Tania Bale

tanb profile image

tanb 7 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hello, Thanks for your comment.

I would like to say that this discussion is NOT about the artist. The discussion is about Tingatinga Art. Of course their entire communitys work doesn't look excatly the same, All Tingatinga Art is original. The Tingatinga painting you are refering to is just an example of the beautiful works the Tingatinga Artist's create.

Amanda 7 years ago

I'd really love to know who the artist is and if this work has a title or not.

Dennis 7 years ago

Tingatinga Art is really nice.

John 7 years ago

I like Tingatinga!

michael.j.p 6 years ago

what was the name of the piece of art work shown

tanb profile image

tanb 6 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hi Michael the painting was called Tall Maasai.

Here is a link to view it


The painting has been sold and sent to Canada.


Tania Bale


nikki1 profile image

nikki1 6 years ago

incredible art/informative

Melissa 2 years ago


I'm not sure if this blog is still current and if anyone may be able to help.

I was wondering if anyone could tell me who I would need to contact about using this image for educational purposes?

I have been looking online but finding it difficult to find a direct contact to request permission.

Hope to hear soon, thanks in advance.

Kind regards


African Art 2 years ago

Hello Melissa, You are welcome to use this image for educational purposes.

All the best

African Art Online.Com

Melissa 2 years ago


Thank you ever so much for granting permission to use the 'Tall Masaai' artwork.

Kind regards


tanb profile image

tanb 2 years ago from New Zealand Author

Hi Melissa, you are welcome, if I can help with anything else please let me know.


Tania Bale


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