Photographs © Tim Hamill
This Fali doll has been vetted as being authentic.
In addition to a very rich display of beads, this doll is adorned with cowrie shells and 5 coins from the 30's - 50's from British West Africa and a French colony.
In Cameroon, when a young Fali man becomes betrothed, he makes a doll (ham pilu) from wood and decorates it with hair, beads, and other small objects. He then gives it to his fiancee, who wears it in a baby carrier on her back. The doll is a symbol of their marriage commitment and represents their future child. The man gives the doll the gender that he desires for his first-born. The young woman cares for the figure until the promised child is born; at this point, the couple carefully stores the doll away. ---From ISN'T S/HE A DOLL, PLAY AND RITUAL IN AFRICAN SCULPTURE (1996) by Elisabeth Cameron
RETURN TO FALI DOLLS PAGE
GO TO AFRICAN DOLLS PAGE
GO TO AFRICAN BEADWORK PAGE
GO TO FAMILY MATTERS EXHIBITION PAGE
GO TO AFRICAN FIGURES PAGE
GO TO NEW ADDITIONS PAGE