Fon Legba Phallus

c. 1850
$580 USD
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W: 4.25" D: 4.0" H: 19.0"
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This carved-wood phallus, called a legba, was intended to ensure fertility and bountiful harvests and was among many placed outside dwellings and in the fields of the Fon people of West Africa. These phallic carvings were named after Legba, the trickster son of God, who serves as an interlocutor between the human and the divine. Stories abound about Legba’s devious shenanigans. In one tale, Legba, frustrated at being blamed for adversity while God is praised for good fortune, imprinted God’s footprints on a wet field so that he would be blamed for the theft of the Fon people's yam harvest. Angry for falling victim to Legba’s ruse, God departed to the heavens, leaving his son to facilitate communication between the earthly realm and the spiritual world. We’ve mounted this legba on simple base to accentuate its sculptural qualities and conversation-sparking form.

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