|Abron Akua'ba figure, Ghana
early to mid 20th century
ex private U.S. collection
The Abron or Bono are an Akan people of West Africa which produce similar figures to the
Fante and Asante people which are commonly referred to as akua'ba figures.
The Abron and Fante people make figures with more square or rectangular shaped heads
as opposed to the Asante who generally make figures with rounded heads. This is a nice
older example of this type of figure from the Abron people.
"The legend of the origination of the Akua'ba dfigure comes from the story of a woman
named "Akua" (many variations of the name are found as there are many variations of the
spelling of "akua'ba") who could not get pregnant and went to a local diviner or priest and
commissioned the carving of a small wooden doll. She carried and cared for the doll as if it
were her own child, feeding it, bathing it and so on. Soon the people in the village started
calling it "Akua" "ba" - meaning "Akua's child", since "ba" meant child. She soon became
pregnant and her daughter grew up with the doll/figure."