Artist: Agnes Nyanhongo
Dates: b.1960, Nyanga, Zimbabwe
Materials: Spring Stone
Dimensions: 4′ x 15” x 13”
About Agnes Nyanhongo
Agnes Nyanhongo is considered one of the most important Zimbabwean sculptors of the 20th century. More importantly, as a woman in a male dominated field, she pushes the boundaries of the medium by taking inspiration from the roles of women in traditional society. “Zimbabwe’s fertile plateau and mountain ranges contain vast mineral resources including serpentines and such other stones like verdite and soapstone. Indigenous Zimbabwean sculpture was rediscovered after World War II when mission teachers began to encourage carving in relief and in the round. The most striking elements of these sculptures are the unified and simple, yet powerfully rounded, compact, and solid forms. Even the earliest examples have typically huge African heads and hands. Commonly expressing the importance of positive human relationships and of harmony with the spiritual forces of nature, much of the sculpture is realistically portrayed.
Walker, C. Winter-Irving, “Zimbabwe: Sculpture.” Grove Art Online. Oxford University Press, 2007.