December Canvas

December 29, 2024 - January 9, 2025

"December Canvas: Ghana Art Exchange" is a unique retreat for artists to delve into Ghanaian culture during the festive December season. Artists will immerse themselves in the local rhythms and traditions, using their creative lens to craft unique expressions of the Ghanaian December experience.


Experience the vibrant soul of December in Ghana through an immersive art exchange experience.
Visual/performing artists, musicians, photographers, and videographers are invited to capture the essence of the season, fostering collaboration and networking with local artists. 

Artists will connect and collaborate with their Ghanaian counterparts, fostering a dynamic cross-cultural dialogue. The emphasis is not only on creating individual artworks but also on weaving a collective narrative that transcends borders.

The culmination of this cultural journey is a Presentation Night, where participants showcase their creations and concepts, weaving a tapestry of diverse perspectives on  December in Ghana moments. American and Ghanian artists will unveil their works and share the concepts behind them, celebrating cultural exchange and artistic expression, inviting the audience to witness the fusion of international perspectives with the distinctive spirit of December in Ghana.

How to Attend:

Interested in attending?

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What we'll do...

Artists will engage in virtual orientation sessions to familiarize themselves with the program objectives, logistics, and cultural context of Ghana.  (Participants will be advised on finalizing travel arrangements, obtaining necessary documents, and preparing for their journey to Ghana.)

Accepted artists will also prepare digital versions of their work for sharing during art shares and exhibitions.

Once in Ghana...
Our days will be filled with a diverse range of activities, including guided tours of art galleries, visits to museums, and workshops and talks led by talented artists.

Visiting artists have the chance to explore traditional craftsmanship, contemporary art techniques, and cultural practices that have shaped Ghana's identity over the centuries.

Throughout our journey...
Artists will have the opportunity to collaborate with fellow participants in brainstorming ideas, concepts, and projects inspired by the vibrant rhythms, colors, and traditions of Ghanaian culture and the festive December season.

Visiting artists will participate in cultural excursions, visits to local markets, traditional performances, and interactive workshops to deepen their understanding and appreciation of Ghanaian heritage.

Artists will have opportunities to share their own artistic creations, exchange ideas with local artists, and collaborate on projects that celebrate the diversity of artistic expression. From lively performances to thought-provoking discussions, our time in Ghana will be marked by moments of inspiration, connection, and mutual learning.

Artists will also be granted dedicated time and space to explore their creative ideas and craft unique expressions of the "Ghana in December" experience.

On the final night...
Artists will have the opportunity to showcase their work or describe the concepts that have inspired them at a presentation night. This event will be attended by fellow participants, local community members, and invited guests. The aim of the event is to allow artists to share their creative process, inspirations, and experiences with the audience.

Participating artists will embark on a transformative journey, blending artistic exploration, cultural immersion, and collaborative creativity in the vibrant setting of December in Ghana.

The Program runs from Dec 29 2024 - January 9 2025
Only 10 spaces available!

 (Please see FAQs on this page)

"I'm a Ghanaian Artist, how can I get involved?"

As a Ghanaian artist, you can get involved by applying to join our exchange cohort through the link below. Additionally, you can help spread the word among fellow artists, attend our events in Ghana, and engage with the community of collaborating international artists. Your participation is invaluable to us, and we look forward to welcoming you into our vibrant creative community.

For Ghanaian Artists

Why Offer an Artist Exchange in Ghana?

  • Cultural Immersion: 
    Experience December in Ghana, immersing yourself in the vibrant culture, traditions, and festivities unique to this time of year. Engage with local communities, explore cultural landmarks, and gain new perspectives that will enrich your artistic practice.

  • Artistic Inspiration: 
    Draw inspiration from Ghana's rich artistic heritage, diverse landscapes, and vibrant street scenes. Capture the beauty of the country through your artwork and explore new themes, techniques, and subject matter that may influence your creative process.

  • Collaborative Opportunities:
    Collaborate with fellow artists from Ghana, fostering cross-cultural exchanges and creative partnerships. Share ideas, techniques, and perspectives, and work together to create collaborative artworks that reflect the spirit of unity and collaboration.

  • Networking and Professional Development:
    Expand your professional network and connect with artists, curators, and art enthusiasts from diverse backgrounds. Build meaningful relationships, exchange contacts, and explore potential opportunities for future collaborations, exhibitions, and residencies.

  •  Exhibition and Presentation Opportunities: 

    Showcase your artwork and concepts at the final presentation night of the December Canvas Art Exchange. Share your creative vision with a diverse audience of fellow artists, art enthusiasts, and members of the local community, gaining exposure and recognition for your work.

  • Artistic Growth and Development:
    Challenge yourself to explore new artistic techniques, styles, and concepts through collaboration with artists from diverse backgrounds. Push the boundaries of your creativity, experiment with new ideas, and refine your skills in a supportive and inspiring environment.

  • Expand Your Horizons:
    Broaden your worldview, and cultivate personal growth and enrichment through meaningful interactions and immersive experiences.

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Your Facilitator

Ruby Maddox is a Purpose Coach and workshop facilitator dedicated to helping individuals cultivate their potential for meaningful contributions in the world. 

She is also a photographer. Her works can be viewed on IG at @blackwhite_chronicles where she showcases her artistic lens from Ghana to her hometown in Massachusetts.
Ruby is  the co-founder of two nonprofit organizations and works as a strategic consultant for boards, organizations, and teams. 

Since 2010 Ruby has visited the beautiful country of Ghana several times. She has led various groups on trips to Ghana and facilitates "Purpose Circles" through her "Direct Your Purpose" company. 

"My vision is to see you live your best life once you become purpose-oriented."

Ruby Maddox - Purpose Coach

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Important Dates:

  • Virtual Artist Exchange: Aug - Dec 2024 (Selected dates tbd)
  • Trip Dates:  Dec 29 2024 - Jan 9, 2025

Trip Cost:

  • $4500/pp

(Payment Plans available)


  • Airfare
  • Visa Fees
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Additional excursions
  • Personal items and gifts
  • Alcoholic beverages during meals

(Travel guidance on obtaining a visa and purchasing airline tickets will be provided.)


Trip insurance is recommended. You can purchase travel insurance on your own.

  • Travel Guard
  • GeoBlue (Health Insurance)

What's Required to Attend?

  • A valid passport with at least 6 months of validity remaining on date of departure.
  • Yellow fever vaccination (with proof via Yellow card)
  • An approved visa from Ghana (guidance provided)
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Your 12-Day Experience will include:

  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily
  • Accommodation and transportation
  • Welcome dinner upon arrival
  • Curated artist events (Workshops, panels, social activities) 
  • Access to events and festivals throughout the experience
  • Cultural activities and excursions
  • Opportunities for artistic reflection and creation
  • Rest, relax, and rejuvenation
  • Travel to other parts of the country (Cape Coast and Kumasi)
  • Connections with other community groups.
  • Assin Manso Slave River Site (Last Bath) 
  • Village of Bonwire
  • Cape Coast Castle / Door of No Return
  • Kakum National Park
  • Final Presentation Night

    (Subject to change)

Trip Partner

Culture Beyond Borders (CBB) stands for a future where international travel and intercultural understanding is commonplace. CBB is a Ghanaian-owned company believes that our best hope for a more compassionate and accepting world lies in cross-cultural collaborations. CBB sees international travel experience as essential for those looking to change the world. In response, CBB develops and supports curious travelers and interculturally-competent adventurers.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's the cost of this experience?

The cost for this 12-day experience is $4500 per person for single occupancy. A $500 deposit is required to reserve your space. (Due after acceptance) After reserving your spot, feel free to pay in bi-weekly or monthly increments until your remaining balance is due. (Balance must be paid at least 10 days before the trip)

Is there a payment plan option?
Yes, a monthly payment plan will be available for all participants the December Canvas Art Exchange. We understand that covering the full cost upfront may be challenging for some artists, so we're happy to accommodate payment plans to make the program more accessible.  You will receive instructions on how to sign up for the payment plan upon acceptance.

When and Where is the trip?
December 29 2024 -January 9 2025 in Ghana. We will spend the first part of the trip in the capital city of Accra before heading to Cape Coast and Kumasi. We will be staying in Accra, Cape Coast, and Kumasi.

Why Do I Need to Pay?
Organizing an international artist exchange involves significant expenses, including venue rentals, transportation, accommodation, meals, and logistical support. By asking participants to cover their own costs, it helps offset some of these expenses and ensures the program remains financially viable.
Ultimately, while self-funding may require a financial commitment from participants, it enables the program to operate effectively.

Why isn't there external funding available? 
We hope to offer scholarships in the future to help offset costs for artists. However, depending solely on external funding sources can be unpredictable and may not be sustainable for us in the long term. We hope to at least offer a hybrid funding model in the future. 

Can I arrive before the retreat or stay longer?
Yes. Please inform us if you would like to extend your trip or arrive early. Our travel coordinator is equipped to handle your solo traveler needs outside of the retreat experience.

Is there anything not included in the trip enrollment?
Flight and Visa fees. Please note, you will be flying into Kotoka International airport in Accra. We will need to know your arrival time to arrange for your ground transportation.

Can I book a private room?
All rooms are currently private.

What happens if the trip is canceled due to unforeseen events?
If some out-of-the-ordinary disaster happens (ie. global pandemic travel restrictions) and the trip can no longer take place at its scheduled date, we will simply reschedule the retreat for a later time.

When do I have to sign up by?
The sooner, the better, as there are only 10 spots available for this trip.

Refund & Cancellation Policy
Direct Your Purpose reserves the right to cancel any trip for any reason, but will not cancel a retreat less than 60 days before departure except for unusual or unforeseen circumstances outside of Direct Your Purpose’s control. In order to protect yourself, purchase travel insurance prior to your trip.

Cancellation by Participant:
Please be sure you want to attend. While we understand that life happens, we cannot refund or transfer any deposits for our retreats. Please note that there will be no refunds or discounts for arriving late, leaving early, flight cancellations, travel delays or illness. We wish we could compensate people for unforeseen circumstances (injury, family emergency, etc), but we have costs already incurred when reserving retreat centers and excursions. In order to protect yourself, purchase travel insurance prior to your trip.

Cancellation by Direct Your Purpose:
We may cancel a trip at any time prior to departure due to natural disasters, terrorism, political instability, COVID-19, or other external events that make it no longer viable to operate the planned retreat. If your trip is canceled, we will notify you immediately and provide instructions for the next steps. In circumstances where the cancellation is due to external events outside our reasonable control, credits will be less any unrecoverable costs. We are not responsible for any incidental expenses that you may have incurred as a result of your booking, including but not limited to vaccinations, travel insurance, or non-refundable flights.

Got Questions? 
Email  [email protected]