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Heart of Africa

wedding ceremony of the igbos


Tempera on canvas. 1993. 45 х 65 cm

This painting depicts the wedding ceremony of the Igbos, one of the tribes of Nigeria and Benin. While the relatives and guests are drinking and eating, the groom and the bride, accompanied by mother of the groom and the shaman, are going to the crossroads where they bury simple sacrifice: kola nuts, cowrie shells and yam tubers. Then palm wine and blood of the chicken are sprinkled on the place of sacrifice. The shaman dances around with songs and spells, blessing the new family. In the past, when shamans were more fair, they used to bury the chicken too; but in our spoiled century, the chicken and wine are now taken by the shaman






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