About this Artist
Born at Have in the Volta Region of Ghana, Henry Kpei was formally educated at the E.P Primary and Secondary School, where he finished successfully in 1964. He undertook a four-year course in ceramics at Ziga Pottery in Vekolenu in the Volta Region. Kpei was inspired by his uncle, who was seriously into the ceramic business. He owned a pottery business and Kpei took the opportunity to practice pottery at home. That was how it all began.
With the training he had, he was able to put his creative skills to use and develop a lot of clay works. To the amazement of all, Kpei picked up in record time and decided to establish himself. He is now the production manager of Ekem Pottery, a limited liability company with two partners. The company, located at Winneba in the Central Region of Ghana, has a working force of five.
The basic material used in creating the vases is clay. It is mined manually in a village called Nsu Ekyir in Central Ghana. The clay is dried out in the sun, ground, and screened into powder by a hammer mill. It is further mixed with water and pugged to the right consistency for use. The forms are hand built and wheel thrown, and the pieces are then kiln-fired. This process involves two types of firing. Namely the bisque, which is the temperature at 960 degrees and the gloss fires to 1,045 degrees. The next step is the glazing. All these procedures ensure strength and durability.
Kpei, who is married with nine children, discloses that his outfit has held numerous exhibitions, mostly at the International Trade Fair Site in Accra. He sells directly to individuals and prominent companies in Ghana.