AN EASTER MESSAGE
At first glance this delicately carved figure of the Madonna and child seems unsurprising, although radiantly beautiful. The Christ child is shown holding an orb representing the earth and symbolizing his own future as Salvator Mundi, or ‘Savior of the World.’ A remarkable aspect of this carving is that it comes from the deepest, darkest heart of Africa – the present day Republic of Congo.
Sometime in the fifteenth century, Portuguese explorers brought Christianity to the area inhabited by the native Tabwa people. Evangelization has never been easy, even for those with missionary zeal, but the Tabwa remain predominantly Christian to this day. Perhaps this is because European religious symbols did not seem foreign to them. The Madonna and child is uncannily similar to the traditional Tabwa maternity figure, which depicts a caring and devoted mother nurturing her child.
It is likely the carver who created this piece was influenced by traditional Tabwa sculpture as well as their own personal religious devotion. Whatever the influence or motivation, this piece was meant to convey a simple message – unconditional love can save the world. It is worth repeating at this time and all other times of the year!
Standing Figure of Madonna and Child
Republic of Congo,
3.5" W x 3.25" D x 12.5" H
Part of PRIMITIVE's much larger collection of Christian, religious and sacred art from around the world. For more information or to purchase contact a Client Advisor at 312-575-9600 or email email@example.com.