My works have their origins in the story of Ifani, the daughter of a Benin court sculptor. Aching to carve, Ifani convinces her family to allow her to travel to study. She returns to find her community scattered by war and slave catchers. Ifani molds the earth into the faces of her lost relations, singing into them to activate their energy and memories. I too seek out stories of those who came before me. My research to date has unearthed over 300 ancestors. I wonder about the lives behind the births, beyond the census. My Guardian vessels and masks, modeled from stoneware and activated by sound, bear the myriad faces of my kin.