Njuzu (Mermaid)

2006

Springstone (Serpentine)

  • 54cm (h)
  • 33cm (w)
  • 17cm (d)

The njuzu [water spirit] is an important part of Shona mythology. They are supposed to live in deep lakes and rivers, and may lure the unwary person into the water. Those who return from this experience are more likely to become a n’anga [witchdoctor], as they have travelled between the physical and spiritual worlds.

Njuzu are thought of as mermaids, human on the top half and fish-like below, and are a common theme in Zimbabwean sculpture. Each artist has their own personal way of representing them.

This piece has a lovely contrast between the elegant grey lines of Edronce’s trademark detailing and the shiny black of the polished springstone.

Springstone is a hard variety of serpentine stone. It is an excellent sculpture medium, as it has a dense internal structure with very few flaws.