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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Masterpieces of African Art : Yoruba Wooden Headcrest of a Woman
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Yoruba Wooden Headcrest of a Woman - PF.4681
Origin: Southwestern Nigeria
Circa: 20th th Century AD
Dimensions: 12.75" (32.4cm) high x 7.5" (19.1cm) wide
Collection: African
Medium: Wood

Location: Great Britain
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The Osanmasinmi are displayed on the tomb-altars of members of the royal lineage. Some of these memorial sculptures are in the shape of a ram's head; while others, such as this beautiful example, have features of a young woman. Six grid squares circling the top of the forehead have the same textural effect as her thick beaded collar. Her almond shaped ears are perfectly mirrored in her slanted eyes. All of these elements join together in a play of different textures and shapes to produce absolute balance and harmony. Even the base of the head is fashioned like an ornate collar. This sculpture is intended to have a powerful visual effect in order to gather 'power' to communicate with the ancestors. Through the sculptor's skill this objective is achieved; at once satisfying the needs of religion and creating a work of art at the same time. - (PF.4681)


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