MsAfropolitan Boutique Interview Series – Shiri Achu of Shiri Achu Art

The mission of the MsAfropolitan Boutique is to showcase and offer a handpicked range of products made by African Diaspora women on a rotating basis. Visit us here.
As part of my journey to achieving this goal, I’ve met such inspiring women whose stories I want to share with you in an interview series features which you can follow here.

‘A truly talented young artist and certainly an inspiration to my own verbal artwork…’ Aaron Flynn

These words can be read on the website of the second lady to feature in the interview series – Shiri Achu, an artist whose works made such an impression on me as well.
Her art feels soft, African, modern and historic all at the same time.

Featured in the MsAfropolitan Boutique are two new pieces, ‘Her Stance’ and ‘Masaai Soul’.

Her Stance

As a samba dancer myself I literally fell in love with ‘Her Stance’ as it captures the roots and elegance of the genre. ‘Masaai Soul’ makes me think of Afropolitanism, I associate the two figures with migranthood and stories of the motherland in memory.

Maasai Soul

As always, the MsAfropolitan Boutique offers these with a price reduction. Get your independent art prints quick – they are limited editions.

Could you describe Shiri Achu in one or two sentences?
Shiri Achu Art is Shiri Achu’s Artworks (notably acyclic paints on canvas and hardboard) inspired by much but mainly by Africa, Colour, Movement; loving to capture the soul of my subjects.

Could you share an exciting development currently taking place for Shiri Achu?
Can I share two please?
First, my upcoming and debut exhibition in Cameroon on the 24th of November 2010.
Secondly, I am partaking in the Great African Banner where a number of artists from all the various countries of Africa are requested to do two paintings on canvas which would travel throughout Africa and be exhibited in all the countries. I find this a great and unique initiative and i’m pleased to be part of it.
What does the term Afropolitan mean to you?
An Afro Cosmo… One who is of afro (African, Carribean decent) in the western (Cosmo) World…

If you could pick one known African woman, Diaspora and continent, that you think is inspiring, who would that be and why?
Angelique Kidjo-love her music.

Is there any particular element from Cameroonian culture that you maintain in London?
So many… I wear my traditional attires, I cook and eat the traditional meals. Infact, you should see me today, I have my hair plaited in thread in the style known as ‘follow me’ and I’m wearing my traditional Bamenda wear.
Do you have a favourite post on the MsAfropolitan blog, and why?
To be very honest I do not! I love many of the posts on MsAfroplitan blog…

What inspired the name for your business?
ShiriAchuArt is simply (and appropriately) my name with art as a tag to express Art; I could not use ShiriAchuPaintings, or even ShiriAchuPaints for example as that is too limiting. With Shiri Achu Art there is scope for diversion (if necessary or desired) and growth.

  • Vickii

    Shiri Achu is an incredible woman! I’ve always envied people with artistic talent and she has plenty! It is interesting what you said about ‘Our stance’ because I’m sure I’ve seen a picture of you dancing where you look exactly like that! Both beautiful pieces of art – all the best to Shiri in her exhibition and The Great African Banner!

    • Shiri Achu

      Thanks for your kind words Vickii.

  • annie q. syed

    hi minna,

    just checked this out with my mother sitting next to me. thank you for bringing her to our attention. I know of the artist/musican/singer Angelique Kidjo but nope, was not familiar with this artist’s work that you have showcased.

    and i really like “her stance.” what movement.

    we need to catch up soon, regarding this project of yours. have some ideas.


    we all really do meet for a reason. head just exploded with ideas. hahaha

    must go write my still sundays, clearly needed, given head is all over!

    you are doing amazing work and i am so proud to know you.

    also—love the new photo. love it. grounded, strong, beautiful



  • Shiri Achu

    Minna, Thanks for a great interview! So happy to be part of The MsAfropolitan Boutique. Loving Ms Afropolitan!! You are indeed doing a great job!!

    vickii and Annie, Thanks very much for your kind words. Do feel free to join me on FB.

    Kind regards,


  • Apu

    Not because she is my sister… but Shiri Achu definitely has a heart of gold, which she wears on her sleeves… I think this is all reflected in her paintings, which exlore all aspects of life… from the daily grind of climbing trees and catching a cock, to the enjoyments of carnival and meats! She’s just priceless! You are doing great work here MsAfropolitan!

    Keep going ahead with God as your guide guys!


    • MsAfropolitan

      Thanks, your sister is a very talented woman, I’m really proud of her and can only imagine you are too.

      thanks for the blog props, means a lot to me

      • Shiri Achu

        Thanking you both very much!

        • Shiri Achu

          You are both amazing tooooooo :-)

  • beeladonna

    😀 i bet you know why I am smiling!!
    Well done Shiri Achu!!
    Her art transports you to once upon a time! Very African and capturing.
    I have already imagined the beginning and continuation of the above art,
    and art that transports is GOOD ART!
    All the best to Shiri!!!

    p.s Angelique Kidjo? She sang wombolombo didnt she lol? I know that face!!

    • Shiri Achu

      Thanks very much for the kind words beeladonna – means alot!
      If you are on FB please join me there…

      Kind regards,

      • beeladonna

        you are welcome :-) if I get back on facebook i’ll most definitely join! x