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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Kulango : Kulango Wooden Sculpture of a Woman
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Kulango Wooden Sculpture of a Woman - PF.5930
Origin: Ghana
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 13.75" (34.9cm) high x 2.5" (6.4cm) wide
Collection: African
Medium: Wood

Location: United States
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This figure is a splendid example of the uncommon Kulango statuary. The figure bears the rounded, ovular facial contour characteristic of Kulango art while the figure’s posture and execution reveals the influence of their neighboring tribes including the Akan and the Baule. The woman stands with her legs apart, knees slightly bent, and rests her hands along side her swelling belly. This stance is directly related to similar Baule sculptures and can also be seen in the famous Ashanti Akua’ba fertility dolls rendered in the later representational style. The woman’s ribbed neck, suggesting an overabundance of necklaces, is also related to the earliest Akua’ba types. Perhaps the most striking feature of this gorgeous woman is her fantastic hairstyle. Her hair has been carefully gathered into three braids that rise upwards over her head as if horns. The remaining hair at the lower back of her head have been collected and arranged into two rows of three nodules. This elaborate coiffure enhances her regal stature and echoes the gentle arc of her jawbone. Based on her swelling stomach and large, elongated breasts, it is clear that she is a fertility figure representing the epitome of female beauty as interpreted by the Kulango tribe. - (PF.5930)


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