Gambian artist, Etu Ndow, 48, dies


His death has attracted a deluge of condolences on his Facebook page from a diverse base of fans stretching across continents. “ I cannot believe this. Oh Etu Ndow, I am deeply saddened. You brought so much sunshine to many people’s lives with your art, talents, skill and personality. I know you will be remembered fondly. Certainly by me. Especially in 2008 with my introduction to Africa for real and The Gambia with Strode College. We had so much fun staying in your art village and playing music, singing, dancing together around the fire. My photos and amateur batiks are treasured. You will be remembered. Much love to all who know you and love you in this sad time,” Sophie May Holliday from the United Kingdom wrote.

For Tomora Meseng from Gunjur, the demise of the artiste has impelled him to bring to mind Allah’s omnipotence: “Oh, Boubacarr, you are truly a wonderful friend. Why? Why? Over the 30 years that we had the privilege of knowing you, you have grown into one of the most inspirational people we know. From that very young art teacher in Gunjur, to your first ambitious projects in the family compound in Bakau, to getting a serious training at the Academy for Fine Arts in Holland, becoming an internationally renowned artist. And then that bushy plot in Tujereng at the end of a dirt track – nothing was there, not even water, just wild mangoes and big snakes.”

Lenna-Marie Jader from Sweden wrote: “I was blessed to have been to his wonderful, magical village and I bought one of his paintings that is now hanging on my wall in my living room and I had planned to go there again to live in that paradise for some days on my next journey. He was a very talented, clever and warmhearted person. Etu, I will never ever forget about you and may your soul rest in perfect peace! Amen.”


Mommodou Ndow who is a cousin of the late Etu Ndow revealed that the news of his death has adversely affected him both emotionally and physically: “My cousin, Etu Ndow, an artist with infinite talent, has answered to God’s calling. I was paralysed by the sad news and my legs are still wobbly. My heart is heavy and my head is spinning. We shared a room growing up and I have some good memories of that. My brother, until we meet again, may you be granted the highest of jannah. Rest in peace”.


Author: Sainey Darboe