57. Stained elm carving by Christine Kowal Post
mother and child, 94cm high
This carving dates from the 1980's, the time when we first met Christine. She had spent her childhood in Africa, where her father was working as a university lecturer. Christine returned to Britain to study at art school. I remember being amused by her description of herself as having been a painter of robins in the snow! But when she discovered carving, all the dynamism of her early African experience found true artistic expression.
The story of this mother and child is poignant. It is about a decision; the child is being denied.
58. Snake woman by Christine Kowal Post, 53 x 50cm.
Snakes were a reality of life for Christine in Africa. This one makes a delightfully decorative pattern, and although it has got the woman by the throat I am sure she will survive!
59. African carving, mother and child, 43cm high.
We've bought a carving from the Dogon Tribe,
a mother with a child
not by her side but clinging to her back.
She is dressed well
and wears one cowrie shell
upon a necklace made of string.
She stands erect, long bodied,
full, firm breasts
squat haunches and big feet on which she rests,
leans slightly backwards and her navel forms a point.
Above the slender neck a solemn face
her simple clothing worn with timeless grace,
and a loincloth made of sack,
a patina of dust softens the black.
All aspects of a gentle motherhood
carved out in wood
revered and understood.