Art and Death in Southern Côte d’Ivoire

by Robert Soppelsa
US State Department / Art in Embassies (formerly Washburn University)

GhanaAkan peoples

Memorial head

Clay

H. n/a

©Indiana University Art Museum, Private Collection

Photo by Michael Cavanagh and Kevin Montague, LTL3482.41

The relationships among these terracotta traditions and the history of terracotta sculpture in the Akan region are not yet completely understood. Scholars who have done research in the region all agree that more research, particularly archaeological and ethnohistorical research, will be necessary before the picture will be clear. Meanwhile, the sculptures themselves remind us of the existence of a rich artistic tradition in the region which has existed for several centuries and continues to exist today.