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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Yoruba Brass Fans : Yoruba Brass Fan of an Osun Priestess
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Yoruba Brass Fan of an Osun Priestess - PF.5036
Origin: Southwestern Nigeria
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 18.375" (46.7cm) high x 12.5" (31.8cm) wide
Collection: African Art
Medium: Brass

$3,600.00
Location: United States
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Description
At the time when the sacred waters of orisa Osun are taken in brass bowls from the river to the shrine, the priestess carries her fan as an insignia of office. As a mediator between this world and the "other world", the priestess is able to interpret messages from the river deity Osun to her supplicants in response to their questions. She is also in touch with spirits of nature, using these natural forces to help people in a variety of ways.

The use of fine incised lines in a checkerboard pattern gives texture to the four central spheres, connected to two vertical broad lines crowned by a pointed arch. From this basic structure four branch-like extensions emerge, topped by triangles filled with concentric circles and small dots. Two birds facing right are on the upper portion, between triangles on either side, yet still within their own free space. Birds represent the feminine spirit and witches of the night, who are believed to take the shape of birds. In addition, a beautifully designed fish swims on the upper right side. The artist has here combined abstraction with realism to represent the real and non-real worlds, both the river where the animals live and the ethereal space where the gods dwell.
- (PF.5036)

 

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