Barakat Gallery
Login | Register | User Services | Search | Newsletter Sign-up
Barakat Gallery
HOME : African & Tribal Art : Yoruba Staffs : Yoruba Iron Herbalist's Staff
Yoruba Iron Herbalist's Staff - PF.4839
Origin: Southwestern Nigeria
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 56.25" (142.9cm) high x 8.75" (22.2cm) wide
Collection: African
Medium: Iron

Location: United States
Currency Converter
Place On Hold
Ask a Question
Email to a Friend
Previous Item
Next Item
Photo Gallery
Click photo to change image.
Print image
Click photo to change image.
Print image
For the Yoruba people, deities, gods, and evil spirits play an active role in everyday life. Someone who believes themselves plagued by a witch would consult a medicinal specialist who is a follower of the herbalism gods Osanyin and Erinle. This expert in occult matters possesses a staff, such as this very handsome example, used as a “weapon” or tool against the witches. The lovely paradox here is that the witch is symbolized by a bird, the “night birds” that come out after dark to work their mischief. This in a sense is fighting fire with fire, using the opponent’s symbol to turn their magic against them. Apart from its practical use, this staff is a beautiful abstract creation. Some of the birds reveal their identity, such as the delicate fan of the peacock, or the upturned tail of the duck. While others are the essence of pure abstraction, sublime and ingenious, as befits an object of power. The central bird epitomizes Ifa, the god who assists in communicating between the divine and human realms. Bells attached to the circular rim and on the staff herald the coming of someone with authority and magic, magically presented in a work of art. - (PF.4839)


Home About Us Help Contact Us Services Publications Search
Terms and Conditions Privacy Policy Security

Copyright (c) 2000-2023 by Barakat, Inc. All Rights Reserved - TEL 310.859.8408 - FAX 310.276.1346

coldfusion hosting