Dogon Nommo Figure (Androgyne).
19th c African Dogon Sculpture
(active 13th c - present)
Hayward CA. CSU East Bay Art Gallery.
"The best known Androgyne figures in all of Africa were carved by the Dogon in Mali.† This excellent example is filled with male/female symbolism. The genitalia are male, the breasts are female. The spoon in front symbolizes ideal womanhood, the quiver in back symbolizes ideal manhood. The beard represents both. The stool is made up of a round top, symbol of the sky god, and the four legs of the earth goddess. The Dogon came to Mali from the east, probably the Sudan, just south of Egypt. Curiously, their mythology has much in common with that of Bronze Age Egypt. One of their myths is very close to the myth of the Isis/Osiris. The Dogon creator god is a self-created sky god called Amma (Ammo) who created the world with the vibrations of his words. He mated with the earth goddess to produce Nommo who is the primary focus of Dogon worship. Nommo and the bisexual paired offspring of Nommo were self-fertilizing Androgynes who produced the Dogon people and taught them how to live. At the time of initiation, the young Dogon learn these tribal truths and how they too are bisexual Androgynes who must be made into one gender or another. This is done by means of ritual male and female circumcision. Males have their ìfemaleî part (the foreskin) removed. Females have their ìmaleî part (the clitoris) removed. Dogon rituals celebrate the mutual respect of the genders for each other and for their shared cosmic Androgyny."
"DOGON Anonymous | Dogon ""Nommo"" Figure (Androgyne). | c. 1800ñ1900 | Dogon | African Traditional c, 1800-1900 | Institute for Aesthetic Development. Brentwood CA. Text copyright-Lanier Graham | glob2-027"