African art > Statues > Ewe figure
Ewe ritual sculpture (N° 13462)
African art and tribal worship vodun ewe and fon populations.
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Clipped in clay materials in which amulets in the form of seashells clump together, the straight busts of three statuettes follow one another in a wooden canoe. At the front, a small vase, receptacle of a dried fruit, is adorned with a metal ring. The fetishes are coated with kaolin and adorned with pearl necklaces. In Togo, African fetishes are part of rituals beneficial or evil according to the intentions of their owner. The fetishists, following the ritual of divination using palm nuts, make them to order to offer protective and medicinal virtues but also offer versions ready to use more traditional.
These practices, which are still in use today, are sometimes decried and considered as animist and over by the time of Christianization and Islamization. Nevertheless, populations tend to maintain animist practices despite their conversion to the major monotheistic religions, the two beliefs influencing each other.
The Ewe, often confused with the Minas, are the largest ethnic group in Togo. They are also minorities in Ghana, Benin, Côte d'Ivoire and Nigeria. According to Hélène Joubert, the cults given to the Yoruba gods, the Orisha, and those of the Voodoo gods, vodun, as well as their religious structure, would be comparable in many respects. Slaves from different cultures have also exported their practices to Cuba and Brazil. Although there is little historical information about the Ewe, it seems that their location in their current location is the result of invasions and conflicts that erupted during the 17th century.
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