Other works, like the “Nsapo-Nsapo” Male and Female figure (ca. 19), bear blunt, more pronounced features. Eyes rendered in non-wood materials, like mirrored glass or beads, blaze from their wooden surroundings, following the viewer around the gallery. Other accidental details, like timeworn cracks, sometimes enhance the delicacy of these otherwise hard-edged carvings, like the subtle curve of a figure’s chin, or the slight and human protrusion of a belly.
Many of these figures were created to encourage fertility or protect against sorcery by those who carved them, and those uses may still be valid; undoubtedly their extraordinary beauty and ever-present modernity will encourage their contemporary collection for many generations to come.