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Cultural heritage

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Art & Culture

Arts and crafts are important in Burundi and are shown in many ways.  Basketwork is a craft cherished by the craftsmen.  Craftsmen also make with their own design masks, statues, shields and pottery.

Inanga and the Umwironge

When friends get together for an event, they drink sorgho beer (“impeke”), or else banana wine (“urwawa”), together around a big bowl which is a symbol of unity. Music goes along with events and big celebrations where drummers are performing. Some of the music instruments are the flute, the “ikembe”, the “indonogo”, the “umuduri”, the “inanga” and the “inyangara”.

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Arts and Crafts

Crafts are an important form in Burundi and are attractive gifts to many tourists. Basket weaving is a popular craft for Burundian artisans. Other Crafts such as masks, shields, jewelry, painting, wood curving, metal work statues and pottery are made in Burundi.

Throughout history, Burundians have enjoyed a tradition of expression in the visual arts. Decorated papyrus panels, which feature geometric patterns and often depict themes from Burundian legend, are prized by collectors of ethnic arts, as are Burundian-made swords and drums. Ceramic manufacture, introduced by Italian missionaries in the 1960s, has also been an important form of artistic expression, and Burundian potters have added indigenous elements to this imported medium. Other arts and crafts include basketry and beadwork. The dye usually used to colour Burundian handicrafts is derived from natural plant extracts.

Burundi, The Heart of Africa

Throughout history, Burundians have enjoyed a tradition of expression in the visual arts.