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Print - Womans Behind Elephants Head

Womans Behind Elephants Head

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Botswana (made)

  • Date:

    1993 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Setshogo, Thamae (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Linocut on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level E, case MP, shelf 238

Thamae Setshogo is one of Botswana's most established artists. He works in various media - paint, woodcarving and printmaking - but the linocut is especially well-suited to his bold graphic style and balanced compositions. His work often refers to the small details of the natural environment; birds, animals and insects, which in his images become simplified almost to the point of abstraction. The title of this print puns on its witty depiction of both a woman's bottom and an elephant's head.

Setshogo gained an international profile through his involvement in the Kuru Art Project, a scheme run by the charity Kuru D'Kar Trust to enable San artists in the Kalahari region of Botswana to benefit financially from their artistic skills. Printmaking was not a traditional craft for the San but the Trust enabled them to transfer images used in ceramic or leather work to lino-cut and lithography. International sales of works on paper helped the San, who were rapidly becoming marginalised in the country's economy in the early 1990s, to maintain a subsistence level of farming.

Physical description

Unmounted linocut on paper printed in black. The image depicts lizards and birds and other abstract forms that are possibly animal or human.

Place of Origin

Botswana (made)


1993 (made)


Setshogo, Thamae (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Linocut on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Signed in pencil

'Womans behind Elephants Head'
Inscribed in pencil



Height: 24.5 cm Inside mount window, Width: 33.5 cm Inside mount window, Height: 22.7 cm, Width: 32.2 cm, :, Height: 46.9 cm, Width: 42 cm

Object history note

This linocut produced in D'kar, a farming community in Ghanzi region of Botswana where printing on paper is not a traditional craft. Facilities for doing so were provided by the Kuru Cultural Project to help produce artefacts which can be marketed to give financial aid to a community living on or below the poverty line.

Descriptive line

Print by Thamae Setshogo, 'Womans Behind Elephants Head', linocut, Botswana, 1993

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Victoria and Albert Museum Department of Prints, Drawings and Paintings Accession Register for 1993





Subjects depicted

Birds; Lizards; Animals


Africa; Prints; Animals and Wildlife; Black History


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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