Edo Artist, Kingdom of Benin
Nationality & Life Dates:
Nineteenth century or earlier
4 3/4 × 3 × 3 1/8 inches
Fred and Rita Richman Collection
On View - Wieland Pavilion, Lower Level, Gallery 102, African Collection
This ivory bracelet from the 800-year-old Edo Kingdom of Benin is decorated with motifs that refer to the great sixteenth-century warrior king Oba Esigie. Motifs associated with Esigie were popular during the reign of the late-nineteenth-century king Oba Ovoranmwen. The motifs include a Portuguese soldier on horseback and an image of the king himself, depicted in the guise of a leopard. The bracelet’s deep burgundy color is the result of repeated applications of red palm oil mixed with spirits.