BEAUTY AND COMMUNITY LIVING: AN INSIGHT INTO THE ONTOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCE OF EMOTAN SCULPTED ARTFORM
The worldview created by an African creativity is definable in terms of aesthetic qualities and continuum where contradictions and oppositions form a coherent whole. Consequently, cognitive and moral values interact in significant ways to provide us with a non –essentialist conception of art as showcased in Emotan (Uwaraye) sculpted artform. This paper examines the social-cultural significance of the object of artistic significance via the figural statute of Emotan artform and to explain the concept of beauty in Bini worldview, for the purpose of this study, the hermeneutical method is employed. The paper is of the view that the statues of Emotan erected in some strategic locations in Nigeria is not merely decorative, representational, formalistic or for entertainment, rather the artform of Emotan celebrates the fundamental moral category of African humanism, honesty, hard work , truthfulness, loyalty and hospitality. One central argument in this paper is that sculptural symbols and statutes constitute the insignia of cultural and aesthetic epitome of cherished African values. The paper is of the view that character-based ethics is one essential contribution Africa has made towards humanistic cultural universalism.