Course Description

This course offers a unique opportunity to delve into the profound importance of the spirit world that infuses traditional African culture. Belief in the spirit world and the unseen is essential to divination processes and healing rituals and finds important expression in art. Learn about sculptures that are works of art and serve as vessels for spirits who speak to the diviner, yielding guidance to supplicants. The belief in the spirit world is further echoed in deeply spiritual African creation stories. We will learn how these creation stories manifest for various African peoples. We will meet Mami Wata, a water spirit among the Ibibio and other groups in Nigeria and nearby countries. We will also draw upon the African art collection of the instructor, part of which is on display at the North Carolina Museum of Art and the Ackland Art Museum (and will be viewed and discussed there) as well as at the instructor’s home. Three outstanding guest speakers will also share their expertise. | Lecture (plus questions); Field trip(s) 

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Section Title
Hear the Spirits: African Divination Arts and Healing Rituals
10:30AM to 12:00PM
Jan 16, 2020 to Mar 19, 2020
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
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Course Fees
Section Notes
PLEASE NOTE: This class will take place at the North Carolina Museum of Art and also Offsite Locations. Guest speakers: Dr. Amanda Maples, NCMA African art curator, NCMA gallery discussion on February 27; Dr. Victoria Rovine, UNC Chapel Hill professor of art and African studies, Ackland gallery discussion on March 5; and Charlie Jones, nationally recognized African art dealer, discussing Dr. Wilkerson’s extensive private home collection on March 19.