Wednesday, October 10, 2007

More art from the cradle of humanity

Replica of a traditional home in Burkina Faso
Yesterday we visited Le Musee Nationale here in Ouagadougou and were treated to some artifacts and art from Burkina's past. The above image is a replica of what was a typical home in Burkina's past. Note the tree/post in front. This was used to convey not only the name of the family living in the dwelling, but also the presence or absence of fertile women therein, the number of children, men, et cetera*

*Note that all information presented here is distilled from an imperfect translation process, and therefore possibly inaccurate. Our guide spoke no English.

Ceremonial mask
The people of Burkina Faso, like some Native American tribes, revered totem animals. This mask represents the bantam cock. If memory and imperfect understanding serves, it was used to inspire warriors before battle.

Fertility goddess
This sculpture represents a pregnant woman, with its distended belly and laden breasts.

Shaman's ceremonial costume
This costume was used by the village shaman during religious ceremonies.

Traditional garb of the King
These dyed cloak, scepter, and wand were symbols of power, wielded by the king, back in the days of the Bantu empire. Alas, I know very little about this empire other than that its heyday was before the appearance of the Europeans in sub-Saharan Africa.

That's all for now. I'm coming back to America in about 6 days. I may post before then, but if not, see you when I get back.

1 comment:

Shawna said...

Hi Dade, it's Shawna Haase. I just want to tell you that I have really enjoyed reading about your travels. We sent you an Evite to our annual Halloween party - sure hope you can come! Have a safe trip back.