This is the muroora (pron. mu-roar-a), the daughter-in-law, she is very pretty, the idealised version of womanhood. This is a common theme in Zimbabwean sculpture, as the daughter-in-law seems to encapsulate Shona culture’s most valued feminine qualities – beauty, yes, but also she must be demure and subservient and hard-working.
Although things are changing as the Zimbabwean population becomes increasingly urbanised, there is still great pressure on young women to meet this almost unattainable combination of attributes. The older generation, which clearly includes Edward, maintains this value system despite rapid social and economic change.
A gorgeous little Chiwawa sculpture of a lady, with the trademark double-ringed eyes, elongated nose and sharply-edged mouth provides an affordable opportunity to own a piece by one of Zimbabwe’s few remaining ‘first-generation’ sculptors from the ‘Shona sculpture’ art movement. A great entry-level collector’s piece.