The Legacy of Tinga Tinga Art; The Analysis

  • Crystal Obare University of Nairobi
  • Beatrice A. Koech University of Nairobi
Keywords: tinga tinga, East African art, Design, Tanzania


Tinga Tinga, named after its founder Edward Saidi Tingatinga, is an informal art and design style and art movement that began in the second half of the 20th Century in the Oyster Bay area, Tanzania. It is a unique and visually stunning art style that later spread throughout the rest of East Africa. (Chris, 2019) “His ubiquitous style has been met with great popularity by audiences outside Tanzania who love the unique style and the story behind the brand.” (TingaTinga African Art, 2018) Problem: Trajectories of development and changes in tinga tinga art style is barely understood or fully documented. Objective: The main objective of the paper was to establish the inspiration of Tinga Tinga art, its movement and its legacy. Design: The study used qualitative methods to obtain relevant data for the research and used thematic analysis methods to break down themes and nuances. Setting: The study was carried out in Nairobi city while desk and library research was done at the University of Nairobi located in Nairobi, Kenya. Subjects: The subjects of this study are Edward Saidi Tinga Tinga and the Tinga Tinga art movement. Results: There was a certain endearing charm to his work with its lack of sophistication, fresh approach, vibrant colours and cheerful subject matter that drew in many. (Contemporary African Art, 2018) Conclusion: This paper concludes that the Tinga Tinga art style and movement is a force to be reckoned with and does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon. The Tinga Tinga art movement, and its art as a whole, has had an impact on not only East Africa’s art and design scene but internationally as well in various mediums. The art has also inspired a lot of young painters and designers. The researcher recommends further study on Tinga Tinga’s legacy as an art and design movement and how future generations can keep its legacy alive.