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African art - Yoruba:

The Yoruba, more than 20 million, occupy southwestern Nigeria and the central and southeastern region of Benin under the name Nago. They are patrilineal and practice excision and circumcision. Yoruba society is highly organized and has several associations with varying roles. While the male egbe society reinforces social norms, the aro federates the farmers. The gelede is more esoteric and religious. The notables meet in a society called esusu. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu arose after the disappearance of the Ifé civilization and still form the basis of the Yoruba political structure. The Oyo created two cults centered on the Egungun and Sango societies, which are still active and worship their multiple gods, the Orisa, through ceremonies using masks, statuettes, scepters and divination media. Source: "Yoruba" B. Lawal


Ere Ibeji Yoruba figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba figure

Wearing braids organized in an arched crest, this female statuette rising from a circular base has deep scarification, beaded necklaces embellished with grigris and large rings constituting the protective ornaments abiku .
Carved according to the indications of the Ifa transmitted to the diviner, the babalawo, the Ibedji statuettes played the role of substitute for the death of the child. The statuettes are then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of them; she anoints them with oil and feeds them regularly. If she disappears, the remaining twin takes over. Considered as much more than a physical representation of a loved one. The ibedji statues influence the life of the family, which is why the latter continues to address prayers ...


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Tête Ifé Oni
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African art > Bronze, leopard, messenger, warrior, statue, pirogues > Bronze head

In African art, the artistic current of which these sculptures belong is named after the ancient religious capital of Nigeria, Ifè, one of the many city-states established by the Yoruba.This civilization succeeded the Nok civilization. This city-state of Ilé-Ifé, whose growth culminated from the 12th to the 15th century, had an artistic tradition of realistic royal portraits, bronze and terracotta funerary effigies. The parallel folds drawn on the neck would evoke the folds of flesh of the prosperous notables, and the hollowed-out parts that accompany it were to be used to secure the king's beaded veil. The parallel lines of the face are traditional scarifications. The holes around the mouth likely symbolized a beard created by the insertion of hair or beads.
The bronze heads were ...


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Figure of a Yoruba rider
African art > Bronze rider, wooden rider, dogon, yoruba > Yoruba rider

Dedicated to enthroning on a Yoruba altar, this statuette here embodies a deified ancestor, one of the many gods, orisa , comparable to the Christian saints, who make up the Yoruba pantheon, or even the divine messenger Esù or Elégba . The equine, rare in the region, was an attribute of prestige which was reserved for the nobility and sovereigns. This type of sculpture presents recurring elements such as a frame of different proportions from those of the rider. The horse perched on a pedestal has indeed a reduced size. The character with the typical Yoruba facies has triple claw incisions on the face and has an ax. Crusty polychrome patina. Abrasions and desiccation cracks.
The Yoruba, over 20 million, occupy southwestern Nigeria and the central and southeastern ...


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390.00

Yoruba Olumèye cup bearer
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba figure

Sculpture depicting a priestess or a follower, with a face marked with vertical "kpele" scarifications. Her body displays traditional tribal markings.

Chipped polychrome patina. Rift.
Yoruba society has several associations whose roles vary. While egbe male society strengthens social norms, aro unites farmers. gelede has more esoteric and religious aims. The notables meet in a society called esusu . Offering cups, some of which were used to keep kola nuts or other gifts for visitors, were once placed in royal palaces in the Ekiti and Igbomina regions of Yoruba country. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu were born following the disappearance of the Ifé civilization and are still the basis of the political structure of the Yoruba . The Oyo created two ...


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180.00

Sceptre Yoruba Osé Sango
African art > Stick of command, chieftaincy > Yoruba Sceptre

Liturgical objects in African art of the Yoruba
Figure of follower of the god Sango, carried in the left hand during ritual tribal dances, this stick is carved with a kneeling female figure. The physiognomy is characteristic of Yoruba art, illustrated by the large almond-shaped eyes and cheek scarifications. These figures are dedicated to the god of thunder and youth Shango, or Sango, according to the Yoruba religion. The latter would be the mythical ancestor of the kings of Oyo. He was also the protector of the twins, whose occurrence was very frequent in the region. It is a divinity feared for its unpredictability, and revered because it would bring beneficial rains to crops. Women's fertility is also attributed to her.
Satin brown patina, abrasions. Height with ...


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390.00

Igbo altar figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Igbo statue

This naturalistic altar sculpture, allowing communication with the afterlife, features as a maternal figure one of the many female goddesses, the earth goddess Onilé ("owner of the House"), guarantor of longevity, peace, and resources, and linked to the powerful Ogboni society among the Yoruba Egba and Ijebu. It could also symbolize Orunmila , goddess of divination.
Intended to be enthroned on an altar, it was venerated by members of the powerful Ogboni, or Osugbo, society in charge of justice.
Matt crusty patina, very light pink ochre highlights. Missing.
Centered on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, the Yoruba religion relies on artistic sculptures with coded messages (aroko). The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu arose following the demise of the Ife ...


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Yoruba Command Staff
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African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Yoruba Staff

Objects of prestige in African art associated with the Yoruba culture. Among the Yoruba, ritual sculptures are dedicated to the mythical gods "orisa" and supposed to attract their blessings. This stick is made up of different sections: a superposition of human figures topped by a snake and a carved motif probably associated with fertility. Among the Yoruba, the snake also symbolizes masculinity. Piece collected in Gouka, Benin. Red brown oiled patina. Missing.
Centered on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, the Yoruba religion is indeed based on artistic sculptures with coded messages ( aroko ). They are designed by sculptors at the request of adepts, diviners and their clients. These spirits are supposed to intercede with the supreme god Olodumare . The ...


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Couple of figures Ibedji Yoruba Era
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba figures

These sculptures of golden beige hue, embodying twins, are accessorized with their "abiku" protective ornaments made of metal, shells and beads. Their characteristics link them to the egba style. Desiccation cracks.
In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who has to take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, the remaining twin takes over.
Sometimes a man would also have ibeji carved for his wife to induce pregnancy. As a carrier of the twin's soul, the ibeji influences the life of the family, becoming a source of benefit to his parents, who continue to offer prayers and ...


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150.00

Yoruba Medicine Pot
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African art > Jars, amphoras, pots, matakam > Pot Yoruba

This pot of remedies, a basket covered with clay coating, closed by an anthropomorphic-patterned lid, was linked to the Ifa cult created by the Oyos of Nigeria and in connection with the egungun and Sango societies.
Used by the priest of Ifa, a sculpture relating to deities or orishas rises above the pot. Cauris, metal, and seed packets exacerbate the potency of the ingredients placed in the container.
Soruba, more than 20 million, occupy southwestern Nigeria and the central and southeastern region of Benin under the name Nago. They are patrilineal, practice excision and circumcision. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu were born following the disappearance of the civilization Ifé and are still the basis of the political structure of the Yoruba. The Oyo created two cults centered ...


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Pair of twins Ere Ibeji Yoruba
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Ibedji figures

The Ibeji, substitute images in African art.
Traditionally carved from iroko, whose roots and leaves are also used for ritual purposes, these "ere" (statues) figures of twins are in the form of couple figures. The pieces are bound together with cowrie shells, constituting, along with metal and beads, the "abiku", protective ornaments. In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, it is the remaining twin who takes over.
Sometimes a man would also have ibeji carved for his wife to induce pregnancy. As a carrier of the twin's ...


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350.00

Yoruba twin girls Ere ibeji
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Ibedji figure

Abundant necklaces of colorful beads here constitute the protective accessories "abiku" of these doll-statuettes "ere" (statues), embodying twins. They have a braided crest hairstyle dyed with indigo.
Smooth mahogany patina.

In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, the remaining twin takes over. Sometimes a man would also have ibeji carved for his wife in the hope of a pregnancy. As a carrier of the twin's soul, the ibeji influences the life of the family, becoming a source of blessings to its parents, who continue to ...

Gelede Yoruba mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Gelede mask

Gelede in African art. Gelede mask, monoxyletic sculpture featuring a head surmounted by a superstructure. The male figure, standing behind ladders, as well as the birds, form symbols illustrating recurring themes in the Yoruba religion. This religion, centered on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, is based on artistic sculptures with coded messages (aroko).
In Nigeria, also in Benin, this African mask worn at the top of the head is used for the Gelede society's celebratory dances and at the funerals of its followers. These masks occur in pairs, each with a specific name. Mottled matte patina, cracks and abrasions.
Gelede country in Nigeria pays homage to mothers, especially the older ones, whose powers are said to be comparable to those of the Yoruba gods, ...


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Couple of statuettes ere ibedji Yoruba
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Statuettes Yoruba

Equipped with numerous "abiku" ornaments and protective accessories, these "ere" (statues) dolls, the incarnation of twins, have a braided crest hairstyle, tinted with indigo.
Lustrous mahogany patina.
In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, the remaining twin takes over. It also happened that a man would have ibeji carved for his wife in the hope of pregnancy. Supporting the soul of the twin, the ibeji influenced the life of the family, becoming a source of benefits for his parents, who continued to pray to him and to ...

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Ere Ibeji figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba figure

Beaded belts and necklaces constitute the "abiku", abundant ornaments with an apotropaic function of this female "ere" (statues) of a twin. The hairstyle is made up of braids raised in shells.
Satin mahogany patina. Cracked base. In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, it is the remaining twin who takes over. Sometimes a man would also have ibeji carved for his wife to induce pregnancy. As a carrier of the twin's soul, the ibeji influences the life of the family, becoming a source of blessings to his parents, who continue to ...


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Yoruba Pillar Summit
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba statue

This African sculpture naturalistic, allowing according to the Yoruba communication with the afterlife, features as a maternal figure one of the many female goddesses, the earth goddess Onilé ("owner of the House"), guarantor of longevity, peace, and resources, and linked to the powerful Ogboni society among the Yoruba Egba and Ijebu. It could also symbolize Orunmila , goddess of divination.
Intended to be enthroned on an altar, she was worshipped by members of the powerful Ogboni, or Osugbo, society in charge of justice.
Satin polychrome patina, abrasions.
Centered on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, the Yoruba religion relies on artistic sculptures with coded messages (aroko). The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu arose following the demise of the Ife ...


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350.00

Yoruba Ere Ibeji beeldje
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba beeldje

The Ibeji, surrogate images in African art
Standing on a circular base, this female effigy has large globular eyes inlaid with metal pupils, illustrating the aesthetic traditions of African Yoruba art. The fetishist has endowed her with talismanic jewelry meant to strengthen her power.
Grained two-tone platinum.
In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, it is the remaining twin who takes over.
It also happened that a man would have ibeji carved for his wife to induce pregnancy, the object deveant support of ...


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Gelede Yoruba mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Yoruba mask

This Yoruba Gelede African heaume mask combines a face capped with an elaborate polychrome structure at the center of which overlap felines and birds. The Gelede cult with which this type of mask is associated has become a contemporary heritage, based on ancestral traditions: the Unesco inscribed it in the ICH ( Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity) in 2008.

Concerning the Gelede ceremonies ,practiced mostly in the western Yoruba kingdoms, the masks are built on the same principle: a face (of the mask-healm type) and a scene that develops on top of the mask. These are used in masquerades accompanied by music ...


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Yoruba altar figure
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Statue Yoruba

The female figure depicted sitting on a throne whose feet are parallel to the legs of the character, forms an incarnation of one of the many orisa of the Yoruba, equivalent to the Christian Saints. The miniature figures that surround him would be minor followers or deities. Crusty patina, mate. Lack on one of the braids of the hairstyle.
The Yoruba society is very organized and has several associations whose roles vary. While the egbe society is strengthening social norms, the aro unites farmers. The gelede has more esoteric and religious aims. The notables come together in a society called susu. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu were born following the disappearance of the civilization Ifé and are still the basis of the political structure of the Yoruba. The Oyos created two cults ...


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250.00

Yoruba Ere Ibeji figure
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba figure

Ex Belgian African art collection.
Witnessing the great diversity of twin sculptures made according to the indications of the Ifa transmitted to the diviner, the babalawo, this polychrome statuette played the role of substitute for the death of the child.
Slight surface chips and old restoration.
This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, it is the remaining twin who takes over.
Considered as much more than a physical representation of a loved one, the ibedji influences the life of the family, which is why the latter continues to address prayers to him and to dedicate worship and libations to him.

These pieces are among the ...


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290.00

Gelede crest mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Masque articulated

Ex-collection French African art.
This Bright Yellow Painted African Mask is shaped like a crest with raffia twigs. It was worn with a contours costume eroded at the base. The Gelede cult has become a contemporary heritage, based on ancestral traditions: the 'href'U'0022https://ich.unesco.org/en/RL/the-heritage-oral-gelede-00002"-Unesco has enrolled it in the PCI (Immaterial Cultural Heritage of humanity) in 2008 .
Regarding the ceremonies of the 'a href'"https://ich.unesco.org/en/RL/le-patrimoine-oral-gelede-00002"- Gelede , practiced mainly in the Western Yoruba kingdoms, masks are built on the same principle: a face (of the type mask-heaum) and a scene that develops on the top of the mask. These are used as part of masquerades dedicated to the "Mother Supreme " Iya ...


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Epa Ekiti Yoruba Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Yoruba Mask

The Ekiti of the northeastern part of the Yoruba region use polychrome heaumes masks associated with the Epa cult, illustrating the prosperity of the community.
They appear at funerals or rites of passage.
The base of the janiform mask, named ikoko, is surmounted by a tray, and then a second with serrated edges, on which various figures are erected. The release of these masks, which will have been painted by their owners, takes place every two years. Despite the weight of the masks, the dancers perform spectacular acrobatic demonstrations. These ceremonies are also supposed to increase fertility.
Polychrome crusty patina, abrasions. The Yoruba, more than 20 million, occupy southwestern Nigeria and the central and southeastern region of Benin under the name Nago. ...


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