Sunday, 1 February 2009

22.11.08 Sylvester's Mbari

Sylvester is another artist carver we visited about Mbari and he put out a lot of this sculptures for us to see whilst he told us the stories and symbolism behind them. His wife too was an artist and a very welcoming lady.

He very kindly gave me an Ofo stick which is a stick that is used to point at someone if they have done wrong....this is taken very seriously and the person could die as the stick is very powerful. However who soever points the stick must be totally free of blame themselves. I felt very privileged and somewhat envied by my fellow travellers!!

Sylvester is one of the sons of the late Sylvster S O A Chukeggu who died at the age of 103 (1903-2006). His brother who was a Professor of History at Port Harcourt University destroyed the Mbari at Nguru, Mbaise - this act of cultural annihilation was supported by the church and the community.

Sylvester is very proud of winning two 'Goldgong' awards first in Addis Abba in Ethiopia and then at the World Festival of Arts in Lagos in 1977. He still carries out commissions.

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