Ewe maternity figure
Ghana and Togo
A very nice maternity figure from the Ewe people of Ghana and Togo
Wood, pigment, glass beads - 22 cm/8.7 inches
I acquired this figure from Daniela del Tutto, Rome, Italy (2007)

A finely carved figure adorned with small glass beads holding a child in her hands. Maternity figures such as this are less common among the Ewe than
the dolls that we are used to seeing that are very common. This example is especially well carved in my opinion, and has a wonderful presence about it.

The Ewe, who live in southern Togo and Ghana are the eastern neighbors of Asante. They are probably best known for their textiles and also for small
wooden dolls called "venovi" or "venavi" which are used like the Yoruba people in Nigeria used Ibeji twin figurines, for protection of survivor after death
of a twin. Some scholars state that they are also used as children's dolls as well as sometimes used as fertility dolls by women who keep these dolls
under their mattresses or were worn under the skirts of young women to ensure fertility. Scarifications and added clothing and strings of beads reveal
family and clan religious and social affiliations.
References: ISN'T S/HE A DOLL

This figure is no longer in my collection
INCREDIBLE small old glass beads in the strands around her neck.