Today we took a quick trip to Siby to enjoy the festival that celebrates the traditional painting of mud homes.
This year marked the 4th annual Festival Bogo Ja, where we participated in a walking tour of the newly painted homes.
The festival aims to encourage and celebrate earthen architecture that is well-suited for this environment. Rather than viewing mud homes as archaic in this modern world, the Bougou Saba Cultural Center and Bogo Ja seek to promote and honor the tradition by creating a house painting competition. In recent years the practice of painting homes was disappearing, so the festival became a way to create excitement around the beautification of the village.
The painting is led by the women of the Mandé village and the celebration does well to recognize their artistic contribution to the community. In fact, the women we met along the way were eager and proud to share their homes with us.
The colorful homes and granaries stand out beautifully against the otherwise earth-toned environment.
We escaped before the heat settled in too deeply, but check out the video from the festival two years ago if you want to see more.
As always, I was stunned by the beauty breaking through the dust and heat that is upon us in this dry season. Mali is something quite breathtaking.