TIWA Blog

The Water of Life: An Inspiring African Folklore

“Once upon a time, there was a strong and highly influential African Chief who fell terribly ill.  To save the chief, one of his children must travel through the forest of a thousand demons in order to procure the water of life.  Although the chief had many sons, none of these strong men were willing to risk their lives to save the chief.  But the youngest, and only daughter, of this chief boldly volunteered to take the dangerous trip to save her father’s life.”  This story is an example of the many beautiful and inspirational African folklores as passed down for many generations.  The “Water of Life” story, points to the significance and importance of women in traditional African history.  The...

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African Musical Instruments: History of the Yoruba African Talking Drum

Music has been at the core of African traditions for thousands of generations.  From story-telling, to doing everyday chores, to celebrations, and times of mourning, music has, in one way or another, found its alluring way into every culture in Africa.  Traditional hand crafted musical instruments such as a wide variety of drums, rattles, gongs, and bells were (and still are) significant parts of African music.  In fact, in some African cultures, exclusive musical prowess is often specific to a family/lineage and passed down from generation to generation within the same lineage.  For example, in the Yoruba tradition of western Africa, the special ability to creatively manipulate the “talking drum”—a specialized drum used in communicating one’s thoughts (either in venerating...

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"Oblation" African Ankara Art Frame | I am Empowered

It's been said that, as humans, our beliefs, experiences, and thoughts shape our words (and actions). In essence, "show me your thoughts, and I can predict your actions and reactions in certain circumstances."  As an African woman who has experienced female repression at some point, and has watched the plight my fellow women (especially growing up in the African culture) as they sometimes are forced to accept living as second or third class citizens just because of their gender, female empowerment is a topic that consumes a significant part of my thoughts and hence my actions/reactions.  This topic is the inspiration behind my original work "Oblation" African Ankara Art Frame . This work of art depicts an African woman, surrounded by beautiful...

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