Region of origin: Western Africa, possibly modern-day Liberia or Nigeria
A water deity (or class of deities) of the Vodoun religion, the Mami Wata is venerated throughout communities in Africa and brought with the African diaspora to the Caribbean islands and surrounding regions. They often appears as a mermaid or serpentine figure and are said to live in a kingdom under the ocean, but will also come on land in the guise of a normal human. A creature of dual natures, worshipers believe that she can grant them great luck, great wealth and assist with health issues such as fertility, but she can also bring destruction, water-related deaths and disease, with many ailments being blamed as a result of the Mami Wata’s displeasure. This duality is represented by followers in the use of white and red in their clothing and iconography.
Originally posted on Tumblr on May 27, 2016