Hand-carved from soapstone in Western Kenya, the richly hued sculpture features Harambee symbolic line drawings against the smooth round hippo body. Each little hippo is shaped, carved, and colored with care. The Blue Harambee Hippo African Sculpture shows the artisan skill with simple designs sending a happy, welcoming message.
Harambee is an East African (particularly Kenyan) word meaning “pull together”. It is often used to describe groups coming together to worship, or, more generally, compiling their resources in some fashion, whether it be community outreach, fundraising, or political efforts. The Harambee design on some of our soapstone sculptures always includes a circle, signifying inclusiveness.
ARTIST INFO: At the Ndima Crafts’ finishing shop in Nairobi’s industrial district, roughly a dozen artisans of varied ethnicity bring raw soapstone to life by using non-toxic synthetic dyes under the leadership of Charles Ndibe. Charles’ exacting standards of quality and friendly demeanor make him one of Swahili Modern’s most reliable vendors.
The African Soapstone Sculptures are all Fair Trade items. This means that the artisans make a living wage, work under humane conditions and do not harm the environment. You also support the African artisan’s creativity and create a positive a positive exchange between our diverse cultures.
Sculptures are hand made and hand dyed soapstone. Appreciate the uniqueness of each sculpture due to the variations in color and size. Each sculpture is dyed with food-safe dyes and is one-of-kind.
Sizes, color and designs will vary slightly giving each piece its’ own distinct look. One, approximately 5 by 5 by 3 inches, solid African Harambee Hippo Sculpture, blue.