This native Cameroon village is made of clay by artisan Alphonse Yenji (pronounced Yen-i). The clay is shaped, fired in a kiln, cooled, and then dipped into a dye from boiled eucalyptus tree bark to make the bronze patina.
The 10 pieces include: Mary, Joseph, Jesus in a manger, three wise men, two camels, one shepherd, and one sheep. The tallest figures are 8 inches high.
Alphonse Yenji is sponsored by the Presbyterian Handicraft Centre, known as Prescraft, a nonprofit organization that supports local craftspeople. Prescraft provides employment for close to 800 artisans, 40 percent of whom are women.
This Holy Family is from Chulucanas, a town situated on the side of Mt. Vicús in the northwestern coastal region of Peru. Chulucanas is well known for its rich and ancient tradition of pottery making. The techniques used today have been handed down for centuries. They were developed during the time of the Vicús culture which was an important early culture in Peru dating back to between 1000/200 BCE to 300/600 CE.