The decorative patterns on Zulu pots vary considerably. Some show pellets of clay pressed onto the surface, others flaunt incised triangles or arcs, and yet others have bands of hatching. The markings on the two pots seen here reflect scarification of the Zulu female body around the navel. The correlation between a woman’s womb and these beer pots shows the importance of beer as sustenance in the culture, just as a woman’s womb provides sustenance for her child.
From the exhibition: African Pots and Gender (November 14, 2009 – January 3, 2010)