The Tinga Tinga Art movement is named after its founder Edward Tingatinga who started painting animals and village scenes on wooden boards in 1968. It provided him and his wife additional income to his regular job at a Medical Centre. A few years later he started to supply the National Arts Company with paintings for the tourist industry providing financial stability for his family.
He took on some young relatives as his apprentices but his life was tragically cut short in 1972. His apprentices continued the typical Tinga Tinga painting style and over the years have passed on their knowledge and skill to new generations.
The original painting style is plain with little adornment. Todays Tinga Tinga painters use an abundance of flowers, dots, birds and leaves to fill the canvas. The paintings are still characterised by the use of oil paint and strong colours. In 2010, a 1970s Tinga Tinga painting achieved the record price of $51,070.
In much the same way as Aboriginal art struggled to be recognised as art rather than ethnographic material, gaining the acceptance of the work of individuals working within regional schools such as the Tinga Tinga art movement of Tanzania is part of Sanaas mission.
Una Rey, Art Review, Newcastle Herald, Saturday July 16, 2011