Kenya White Hand Carved Soapstone Cat and Mouse Sculpture
* Set of cat and mouse figurines
* Cat - 6" height, 1.5" width
* Mouse - 2" height, .5" width
* White colored soapstone
* Tiny black dot pattern
* Smooth sanded finish
* Made from soapstone mined in South West Kenya
* Handcarved by Kisii tribe
* Made in Kenya
Kisii Stone products are made from the namesake African Soapstone, Kisii Stone. Soapstone is a natural rock. Soapstone is relatively soft because of its high talc content. It has a smooth finish and feels like soap, hence the name. The soapstone for our products is mined from Tabaka Hills in Kisii County of South Western Kenya. The carvers are people from the Kisii community. The men in the community primarily do the mining of soapstone. Using simple tools like shovels, hammers, and others, they extract the stone for carving.
After mining the stone, the men cut the stone into smaller blocks and then carve it using machetes, knives, and chisels to create the desired sculpture.
Once the shapes are ready, it is passed to the women in the community to sand each figure and produce smooth even finishes. Next, they paint the pieces using eco-friendly dyes, creating beautiful and thoughtfully painted murals. On some goods, patterns are incised with a very sharp knife by skilled workers. And finally, the sculpture is polished thoroughly to create a beautiful finish.
During mining, the mineral composition of soapstone can vary. As a result, each stone has a different color pattern, grain, and design. Therefore, no two natural soapstone products are the same, except if the color pattern of the rock is painted. Soapstone in natural color has varying grain of pink and red over white color. Artisans use this stone to create sculptures of wildlife, domestic animals, and abstract figures.