Anthropomorphic wooden sculptures called ere ibeji, were made in the case of death of twin children, which was a frequent occurrence in traditional communities, before the arrival of modern medicine. These figures served as substitutes for the child, as a consolation, a “vessel” in which the child’s soul dwelled. Treating the sculpture as they would a real child, the family expressed their love and tenderness for the child gone too soon. The sculpture “participated” in numerous rituals and ceremonies dedicated to twins and the Ibeji deity. It was believed that the sculpture protects the family, especially children, from sickness and death.

Yoruba, Nigeria, Wood 23 cm

Price:  €  750,-