Among the nomadic Tuareg people of northern Africa, jewelry has meaning. After all, a nomadic people have little incentive to cart loads of trendy, meaningless paraphernalia. Livestock and vehicles traversing untamed, inhospitable terrain of the Sahara desert require thoughtful consideration before adding to the loads they bear. Therefore, the items the Tuareg often serve multiple purposes–and that includes jewelry. [Read more…] about Silver Jewelry with Meaning – The Tuaregs of Agadez
People of Africa
One of the most popular and fascinating forms of Makonde art is sculpture – especially Makonde sculptures . These pieces have become extremely popular today with art collectors and homeowners alike. Considering they come in many shapes, sizes, and types of carvings, it’s not surprising they are popping up all over the world.
“When we plant trees, we plant
the seeds of peace and hope.”
The Green Belt Movement (GBM) is an environmental organization, based in Kenya, which seeks to empower communities to conserve the environment. It was founded in 1977 by Professor Wangari Maathai as an offshoot of the National Council of Women of Kenya (NCWK) in response to the requests of rural Kenyan women. These women noticed a number of environmental issues that were posing a threat to the African environment, namely the drying up of streams, unsecured food supplies.
Tuareg culture is rich in history and tradition. A semi-nomadic Berber people, the Tuareg inhabit a large area of the middle and western Sahara and travel throughout Algeria, Mali, Niger and as far as Libya, Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria.
In fact, Tuareg people don’t perceive the Sahara as one desert, but as many. They call the Sahara “Tinariwen” which means “the deserts”. The Tuareg language is spoken by more than 1 million people.
Extraordinary silversmiths, the Tuareg produce some of the most unique silver jewelry in the world.
Imagine a society with no warfare, no rules, no official leaders, no known history of famine and relatively no personal possessions; a place where people truly live in the here and now.
Well, such a place still exists.
In northern Tanzania—in one of the harshest environments on the planet—live the Hadzabe people. The Hadzabe are a small indigenous ethnic group, numbering fewer than 1,000.
“This Maasai Olympics has been the greatest celebration of Maasai culture I have ever attended,” – Katoo Ole Metito (Maasai), Minister of Internal Security, Government of Kenya.
The Zulu (pronounced ZOO-loo) people are one of the most well-known groups in Africa, most notably for their unique style of speaking. Descendants of the Nguni-speaking people, they are known for their “click” speaking and singing.
The Omo Valley in southern Ethiopia is as picturesque as it comes. Hills, mountains, rivers, graceful waterfalls, jungles and numerous exotic wild animals and plants all converge in this one area. The grand Omo River snakes through the region emptying in Lake Turkana at the Kenyan border.
In the harsh desert environment of the Kunene region in Namibia, live the Himba People.
Despite the modern world creeping ever closer, the Himba have resisted change and preserved their own identity and rich culture.
The Yoruba are excellent craftsmen and are held to be among the most skilled and productive of all of Africa.
They produce remarkable leatherwork, glass, weaving, wood carving and black smithing. As the Yoruba tend to gather to live in densely opulated urban areas, this allows for a centralization of wealth and for a market economy that supports patronage of the arts produced by this prolific group of craftspeople.
Keepers of the Ark of the Convenant?
The Ark of the Convenant was venerated in the First Temple of Jerusalem during the reign of Solomon (circa 970-930). Then, it vanished!
Referred to as Mandingo, Mandinka or Malinke, the Mandingo represent one of the largest ethnic groups in sub-Saharan Africa. Based primarily in West Africa, the population of Mandingo peoples is about 11 million.