Benin Bronze Memorial Head Sculpture

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About

The Benin culture is known for creating superb bronze sculptures to honor its Obas (or kings). In this case, the Oba is shown wearing a hat and a multi-strand coral-bead necklace, with another coral bead on his forehead. Brought across the Sahara from the Mediterranean Sea, coral was the sole property of the king and symbolized his power through his control of international trade. Memorial heads such as this were meant to capture the essence of the Oba's power, and were placed on shrines with other important objects. A hole in the top of the head would have held a carved elephant tusk chronicling the activities of the honored Oba.
Details
Of the Period
Tribal
Place of Origin
Benin
Date of Manufacture
Unknown
Period
19th Century
Materials and Techniques
Bronze
Condition
Excellent
Wear
Wear consistent with age and use
Dimensions
10.5 in. H x 7 in. W x 7 in. D
27 cm H x 18 cm W x 18 cm D
Dealer Location
Stamford, CT
Number of Items
1
Reference Number
LU145127790983
Address
KUNSTBUREAU JENS BUETTNER
at The Antique and Artisan Gallery, 69 Jefferson St
Stamford CT 06902
US
(646) 832-4114
1stdibs Dealer since 2015 Located in Stamford, CT
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