Meet the Orichas (Yoruba objects and Afro-Caribbean religion)

Figure of a human head on a base covered with cowrie shells. The cowrie shells are covered in blue pigment and two strings of cowrie shells hang off the back and side of the figure. There is leather wrapped around the neck of the figure. The head of the figure, carved out of wood, has pointed ears and a conical hairstyle decorated with geometric patterns and lines. 
Yoruba
Figure
wood, cowrie shells, leather, and blue pigment
6 ⅒ in x 3 15/16 in x 3 15/16 in (15.5 cm x 10 cm x 10 cm);6 ⅒ in x 3 15/16 in x 3 15/16 in (15.5 cm x 10 cm x 10 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
Clay vessel with a rounded bottom and a tall neck and handle. The bottom part of the vessel and handle are decorated with small holes and geometric patterns. The neck of the vessel is decorated with a face on both sides. The lips appear to be pursed and the eyes appear to be closed. The  half-circle ears stick out from the top of the neck, just below the rim of the vessel. On each cheek there are three horizontal marks with small holes. 
Yoruba
Vessel
terracotta
11 9/16 in x 8 7/8 in x 9 1/8 in (29.37 cm x 22.54 cm x 23.18 cm)
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis
A hand-held staff with a short cylindrical handle, topped by a kneeling female figure. The figure is holding two rectangular objects in both hands and is wearing a string of beads around her neck. The hair is in a tri-lobal shape with a curved protrusion at the top. A portion of the protrusion may have been broken off.  
Yoruba
Staff
wood, string and beads
12 ⅝ in x 2 ½ in x 2 9/10 in (32 cm x 6.3 cm x 7.4 cm);11 4/5 in x 2 3/16 in x 2 3/16 in (30 cm x 5.5 cm x 5.5 cm)
Loan from the Estate of Kurt Delbanco;Gift and partial purchase from the estate of Kurt Delbanco in honor of Nicholas Delbanco
At the top of the staff, a male figure and female figure peer from a cascade of cowries, brass beads, iron fragments, and seeds. Some cowries are stained with indigo dye. The lower bodies of the figures are concealed by the shell strands above. Their elongated hairstyles extend the overall verticality of the piece. The figures' faces appear to be identical.
Yoruba
Esu-Elegbara Dance Staff
wood, leather, cowrie shells, brass, iron and seeds
22 1/16 in x 11 13/16 in x 9 1/16 in (56 cm x 30 cm x 23 cm)
Gift of Dr. Daniel and Sandra Mato
Carved ax handle is comprised of a kneeling male figure with rounded knob on top of his head, into which the narrow end of a triangular iron ax blade is embedded.
Yoruba
Ax for Ogun
wood and iron
20 7/8 in x 2 3/8 in x 10 5/8 in (53 cm x 6 cm x 27 cm);20 7/8 in x 2 3/8 in x 10 5/8 in (53 cm x 6 cm x 27 cm)
Gift of Bert N. LaDu, Jr.
Conical shaped crown with multi-colored beadwork and a beaded fringe veil. From the bottom of the crown moving up, there are three rows of four faces, where the opposing faces have the same color. On the bottom, 2 faces are blue and 2 are green; the next row has 2 white and 2 brown faces; the top row has 2 white and two yellow faces. The red beads on the faces may resemble scarification marks. There are three-dimensional birds along the sides of the crown as well as a large one on top that is removable. 7 strings of multi-colored beads hang from the crown; most of the beaded veil is missing.  
Yoruba
Oba’s Beaded Crown
glass beads, cotton fabric and raffia palm
33 1/16 in x 7 7/8 in x 7 7/8 in (83.98 cm x 20 cm x 20 cm);33 1/16 in x 7 7/8 in x 7 7/8 in (83.98 cm x 20 cm x 20 cm)
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis
Cloth panel bound in leather with multi-colored beadwork. There are three evenly spaced leather ties across the top, while the bottom has three small, triangular panels attached, each with two strings of beads hanging down. The center of the panel has a face with an interlace pattern below. The rest of the panel has patterns of zig-zags and diamonds in various colors. 
Yoruba
Beaded Panel
cloth, leather, and multi-colored beadwork
24 in x 18 7/8 in (60.96 cm x 47.94 cm);17 1/2 in x 18 7/8 in (44.45 cm x 47.94 cm)
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis
Small bowl supported by two fish on a circular base. The two fish are curved so that the head, tail, and one fin support the bowl while the middle of the body rests on the base. The other fin connects the fish's tail to the head. The edge of the bowl and the base are decorated with incised diagonal marks. 
Yoruba
Bowl
wood
5 ⅛ in x 5 7/16 in x 5 3/16 in (13 cm x 13.8 cm x 13.2 cm)
Loan from the Estate of Kurt Delbanco;Gift and partial purchase from the estate of Kurt Delbanco in honor of Nicholas Delbanco

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8 Collection Object Sources

Figure (2005/1.247)
Vessel (2000/2.111)
Staff (2017/1.668)
Ax for Ogun (2006/2.73)
Beaded Panel (1997/1.311)
Bowl (2017/1.669)

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September 25, 2020 3:04 p.m.

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