Skateboarding In Ghana with J Ganyobi


Would you briefly tell me about who you are? And what do you do exactly?

My real name is Joshua Tetteh Odamtten but you can call me J Ganyobi Odamtten; J stands for Joshua and the Ganyobi is just a nickname that describes me as where I came from as a Ghanaian and the tribe am from ( Ga ), The name Ganyobi simply means a son of a Ga.. and the Odamtten is my last / surname..

I am an artist and a photographer but unemployed at the moment. so I work side by side with 3 of my childhood friends on an urban cloth-line called 33KINGS that we are hoping to lunch and make it big in the near by future..

 33Kings as it stands is the name for a brand in urban fashion coupled with cultural heritage that stands for what the founders believe.

Being an artist and a photographer make you more qualified for this, what can you tell us more about the rise of extreme games in Ghana?
Well there is no much to say about extreme games in Ghana, because it is not a well recognized part of our sports industry especially when it comes to skateboarding. the well known sports here are soccer,boxing,hockey and basketball.. So when it come to extreme games in Ghana it is limited to a selected few or individuals like me and are whiling and trying hard to make it know to the Ghana public through the means of social media..

That is a good spirit, when did you start skateboarding?
I started skateboarding way back in 2003. But by then I never had skateboard, I use borrow a skate that belongs to one guy in my hood. After about 6 months time. They moved out from the hood so I never skated again until later in 2008 when I had my own skateboard and started skating again.. It wasn’t easy for me at all..
Do you guys have a skate team name or any regular skateboarding event?
Yeah we have a team called Unity Skate Club. And ones a while host events..
How did it all start with Unity skate club?
There use to be a skate ramp that we use to skate but it belongs to a company called Cowbell and they provided us with skates and gears, so most at time people call us cowbell skaters because the ramp was for the public and there where so many skaters from different places who comes to skate on it.. And in order to differentiate ourselves from the other people.. We choose the name Unity for our club. Based on our commitment to each other and our instructors.. We we’re more United and committed to skating than any other thing In our life’s by then.. That was back in 2008-2010… But now the skate ramp is more so many skaters have fallen back and some has even Stopped skating because they don’t have the facilities..
Yes facilities is one of big challenges, you as an artist can you brief us about art in Ghana?
Art is one of the growing things in Ghana here tho some times it’s some how challenging to get the right tools to work, I normally do t shirt designing/ printing and graffiti art.. And so far this two is what I can say is leading the art sector when it comes to the youth.. Because more people are graduating from school every year and not all are able to make it up there to become graphic designers or top artist.. So they normaly aim at room decoration/ wall painting for hotels or individuals or grafiti art for movie and video production.. Unlike other artist who has made the name in art, attended higher level of education, or has paintings in Galleries for sale or able to organize exhibitions to show case their works… And one thing about beeing an artist is that, you have to do something else that will support you financially because it not like any other work that you can easily make a sale and gain profit.
joshua 7
Well, it is a short chat but we learn a lot. What can you advice young Ghanian generation?
The only advice I can give to them is that, education is very important so they need to stay in school at all cost as far as they have the opportunity and aside that they need to develop an active life style, believe in them selves and also get close to God because he is the giver of life and with him every thing is possible..
Yeah super cool words, any shout outs?
Shout out to the entire Unity skate club and crew.. All African skateboarder who never gave up on Skating and are doing everything possible to make DSCN5853a name for their country.. And my biggest shout out to you and all the donors who reach out for the needy who love to skate ba have no means.. GOD bless them all..
Thank You Very Much for your time, keep positive works there!!!

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