THE FASCINATING SCULPTURES OF WILLIAM BOATENG
The Sculptor was born some 42 years ago to the late Dr. Augustine Mosi and Madam Theresa Gyamfua. Both hail from Berekum in the Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana.
The Sculptor is an alumnus of Sunyani Secondary School and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi. He holds the Master of fine Arts (Sculpture) Degree.
Currently, he works at the National Commission on Culture, Accra. He has featured prominently in many joint exhibitions locally. Below are some particulars of the Sculptor:
Country code: 233
Some of the works of the Sculptor are displayed as follows:
i. FEMALE NUDE
Most Sculptors are fascinated by the unique physical features of the female. Females embody the feminine principle. Females serve as the focal point of society. The curves of the female body and roundity of expression with a graceful touch¸ satisfy the Sculptor’s quest and longing for beauty and perfection of the female body.
Moreso, in Africa, nudity is a potent form of expression and draws one closer to primeval nature. The wood carving in ebony depicts a female nude.
ii. MALE NUDE
The broad, firm and angular shoulders of the male as against the small but strong waist signify manhood. Male nudity expresses fortification, aggression, manliness, protection and strength. It is a sign of youthful exuberance and a strong desire for procreation. The woodcarvings in cedar and acacia depict male nude postures.
iii. A rite of passage among the Krobos of Ghana, whereby a young adolescent female, undergoes puberty rites to usher her into womanhood is Dipo. This is an age-old tradition and has been able to maintain the dignity of the Krobo girl to remain chaste or virgin until she has undergone the Dipo rites. The wood carving in acacia depicts a Dipo Girl.
iv. BAWA DANCER
Bawa dance is performed by the Dagaaba communities in the Upper West Region of Ghana. It is a recreational dance performed during all festive occasions. During the brightly moonlit nights, Bawa is danced to entertain the people. This dance cements brotherhood; it promotes social cohesion and identifies the communities with a common bond. The wood carving in ebony depicts a Bawa Dancer.
v. DUMBA DANCER
Dumba is a dance tradition of the Wala Community in the Upper West Region of Ghana. It is believed that the royal clan of the Walas migrated from Dagbon in the Northern Region. Dumba dance was performed by the royals of Dagbon, so up to date, the Dumba dance is cherished by the princes and princesses, thus making the dance a royal affair. The wood carving in ebony depicts a Dumba Dancer.
vi. MARKET SCENE
The Market is considered a place of glamour, where the motley throngs in incessant display of colours, meet to haggle over goods and services. A place of commerce, trade and several auxiliaries to trade. Market has its own unique culture. Market is indeed a fascinating spectacle to artists. The relief carving depicts a Market Scene.
vii. IDLE GIRL
Girls idle when there is no parental control. The devil gives work to the idle hands. Idle girls are prone to several abuses and sexual injustices by men who take advantage of their idleness. The wood carving in ebony depicts an idle girl with the hand supported by the head in a melancholy and misanthropic mood.
viii. PREGNANT WOMAN WITH AKUABA DOLL
In the Akan Communities pregnant women and several expectant mothers carry the Akuaba doll with the hope of giving birth to bouncy babies who would as well bear the beautiful and adorable features of the doll. During the olden days, this tradition was held in high esteem and honour. The mortar rendition portrays and expectant mother with the Akuaba doll securely tied with cloth at the back.
ix. GIRL WITH POT
The Sculptor was fascinated with the graceful disposition of the pot of water perpetually perched on the head of the African girl returning from the stream. The roundity of expression of the pot and the braids of the African girl induces a sensual feeling of warmth and comfortability. The wood carving in ebony portrays a girl with a pot on the head.
x. IDEAL WOMAN (NUDE)
The mound-shaped breasts of the African Woman could be likened to the Mountains of Sheba. It induces a sublime feeling of sensual love. The two hands ably supported by the head allow a complete stick out of the breasts, and the entire body described with curves, round and smooth shapes impress the observer continually. The wood carving in ebony depicts the Ideal Woman.
By: WILLIAM BOATENG - NATIONAL COMMISSION ON CULTURE