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Sandervalia National Museum museum of modern african art Sandervalia National Museum museum of modern african art
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Sandervalia National Museum

Sandervalia National Museum: A Glimpse into Guinea's History and Heritage

Nestled in the heart of Conakry, the capital of Guinea, the Sandervalia National Museum stands as a silent testimony to the nation's vibrant past and diverse cultures. As the national museum of Guinea, it hosts a modest display of traditional artifacts drawn from the various regions of the country, along with relics and statues from the colonial period. Additionally, a range of handicraft items is available for purchase.

Location and Physical Features

The Sandervalia National Museum of African Modern Art is located near the Ignace Deen Hospital on the 7th boulevard in Kaloum, in the Sandervalia district of Conakry. It is situated within a park that was once adorned with large trees, most of which have been cut down. An architectural relic from 1896, a masonry box constructed by Aimé Olivier de Sanderval, can be found near the entrance. This intriguing concrete arch often serves as an informal exhibition space for local artists.

Exhibits and Offerings

The museum's collection features antique items from around Guinea, representing the country's various cultures and ethnic groups. It also houses objects from the colonial era, including masks and a sacred forest display. Despite the museum building being largely empty, there is one room filled with masks and musical instruments from different parts of Guinea. A model showcasing the housing styles of different regions of the country is also a part of the permanent exhibition.

Adjacent to this room, an artisan gallery exhibits a variety of items for sale. These include fabrics, traditional costumes, wooden statues, and embossed Tuareg leather.

The museum courtyard gathers statues from the colonial era, representing significant historical figures of Guinea, including Almamy Samori Ture. Other statues include Sanderval, Governor Noël Ballay sculpted by H. Allourd, Doctor Victor Le Moal (1876–1908), and Monseigneur Raymond René Lérouge (1876–1949), surrounded by musicians and a fisherman with his wife and children. The courtyard also houses a buffet restaurant, its railings peculiarly adorned with colonial helmets. A cafeteria, nestled in a hut crowned by a giant colonial helmet, stands as a somewhat ironic tribute to the French colonialists.

In essence, the Sandervalia National Museum provides a fascinating exploration of Guinea's rich heritage, offering insights into the nation's historical and cultural diversity.

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2nd Ave, Conakry, Guinea
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sculpture modern african art

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