How the Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society began

How the Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society began

June 10, 2018

After Edward Tingatinga's tragical death the painters organized themselves as a cooperative, the "Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society" (TACS), with the aim to continue the art of painting in its founder's sense. The Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society was registered on 28th July, 1990.

Today almost 100 painters work in the cooperative - including a few women. Many regard themselves still as Tingatinga's successors, others experiment with new forms and motives. On the one hand the cooperative operates as a painting school for the Tingatinga style of art, but on the other it promotes the art sales internationally to enable its members to earn their living.

In 1996/1997 the Swiss development association Helvetas launched an extensive sales exhibition which toured through several cities in Switzerland. With the proceeds a building for the cooperative in Dar es Salaam was financed, thus providing the painters with a shelter in the rain seasons. Helvetas also supported the cooperative in management, organizational and marketing issues.

Standing on its own feet since 2007, the objective of the Tingatinga Arts Cooperative Society is to be independent of external financial and administrative help in the future, as well as to promote the lively Tanzanian culture.

The Cooperative launched its own online store ( for the sale of handmade paintings and African Art products for global purchase. 


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