Burkina Faso, Early 18th century
22"H X 17"W
Traditional West African compounds feature large water vessels at their center, usually under a tree or on the veranda. Hand-formed by skilled artisan potters, their designs feature incisions, textured surfaces and occasionally animal or other natural motifs. Over time, the surfaces develop a warm, burnished patina that only enhances their beauty. Even today, where metal and plastic have replaced some of the traditional housewares, these types of pots remain cherished for their ability to keep liquids cool.