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In her debut solo exhibition, entitled iLobola, ceramic artist Zizipho Poswa explores the value and relevance of Lobola an ancient African tradition of bride price. In many Southern African cultures, this price was paid in the form of cows, an animal that is synonymous with wealth. Seen as a way of uniting two families Lobola is an ongoing tradition still practised throughout the region with money replacing the cow. 

Lobola is not without its controversies with some seeing it as an outdated custom that objectifies and disempowers women. With her creations, Zizipho pays homage to the spiritual nature of the custom, the creating of bonds and providing a structure of stability for a couple as they build a life together.

Taking four months to complete Zizipho created 12 large-scale sculptures, each representing a role within the Lobola ceremony. Reaching up to 2 metres in height the undulating gourd-like sculptures are made from hand-coiled clay and topped with majestic bronze horns symbolising the cow.

On show at the Southern Guild Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa is a powerful statement of a tradition that is largely untouched by Westernisation.

– Tapiwa

For further information about Zizipho Poswa visit: https://imisoceramics.co.za

[Image credits: The images shown belong to Southern Guild. If downloaded and used elsewhere please credit accordingly.]

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