Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Queen Nzingha a Mbande; Allison Mackey

Nzinga Mbande (1583-1663) was the powerful queen of the Ndongo and Matamba Kingdoms (modern-day Angola) who fought for the freedom of her people against the Portuguese whom were colonizing the area at the time. Early on they had made a peace treaty with one another. In the first of a series of meetings, there was said to be but one chair in the room for the Governor Corria and a mat on the floor for Nzinga, something that denoted her as inferior. Noticing this, she sought to establish her equality with the representative of the Portugal crown. She motioned for one of her assistants who immediately fell on their hands and knees and acted as her chair for the meeting. The Portuguese betrayed Queen Nzinga five years later and she began a thirty year war against them. She died peacefully in her eighties.

I chose to illustrate the scene of Nzinga and the peace treaty and plan to use gouache or watercolor for the finish.

Biography 1
Biography 2

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