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Maternity Figure

Accession Number
1984/1.257

Title
Maternity Figure

Artist(s)
Yombe

Artist Nationality
Yombe (culture or style)

Object Creation Date
circa 1900

Medium & Support
wood

Dimensions
4 3/8 in x 1 3/8 in x 1 1/2 in (11.1 cm x 3.5 cm x 3.8 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Denise Miner Stanford

Subject matter
Yombe sculptural objects depicting a mother and a child are known as PhembaPhemba often take two forms: women holding, cradling, or carrying a child and women nursing a child. This object falls into the former category. According to oral history, the Yombe are descended from Mbangala who had 9 daughters, each the founder of a separate clan. Thus, Yombe depictions of females with children represent more than fecundity and their role as nurturer and care-taker; they also pay homage to the Yombe's matrilineal pattern of descent. 

References Cited:
Felix, Marc Leo.  100 Peoples of Zaire and Their Sculpture:  The Handbook.  Brussels:  Zaire Basin Art History Research Foundation, 1987.  

Physical Description
Carved wooden object depicting a female figure with flexed knees carrying a child on her back.

Primary Object Classification
Sculpture

Primary Object Type
figure

Collection Area
African

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
figures (representations)
mothers
standing

& Author Notes

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