Wish You Were Here: Docent Module


Wish You Were Here Objects Checklist

Cast brass head of a human. A beaded collar covers the neck and chin, while the top of the head is decorated with a beaded cap, small clusters of what may be flowers, and 'wings' that rise from either side of the head and almost meet by the mouth. There is an opening at the top of the head as well. 
Edo (Benin); Benin (ancient Nigerian)
Commemorative Head
19 1/2 in x 10 7/16 in x 11 5/16 in (49.53 cm x 26.51 cm x 28.73 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
With spread wings, and pellet held in the beak.
Benin (ancient Nigerian)
Bird Figure
7 ½ in x 2 ⅜ in x 2 3/16 in (19.1 cm x 6 cm x 5.5 cm)
Gift and partial purchase from the estate of Kurt Delbanco in honor of Nicholas Delbanco
Edo (Benin)
Fragmentary Oba Figure
4 ¾ in x 2 in x 2 ⅜ in (12.1 cm x 5 cm x 6 cm);4 9/16 in x 2 in x 1 11/16 in (11.6 cm x 5.1 cm x 4.3 cm)
Gift and partial purchase from the estate of Kurt Delbanco in honor of Nicholas Delbanco
Life-sized seated female figure holding a child. Face has rounded, high forehead, ovoid eyes, flat, rectangular nose and protruding, open ovoid mouth. Pigmented, bilateral scarification patterns of forehead, temples and jowls, at back of neck. Scarification also on upper arms and breast. Pigmented coiffure is elaborate with triangular and dome-like shapes. Necklace and hoop-like ring carved in relief onto neck and shoulders; figure has protruding navel, wears anklets and armlet at elbow, and holds a baby suckling at left breast.
Akpojivi of Orhokpokpo
Shrine Figure
wood and pigment
72 ½ in x 17 in x 16 in (184.15 cm x 43.18 cm x 40.64 cm);11 4/5 in x 15 3/16 in x 15 3/16 in (30 cm x 38.58 cm x 38.58 cm);60 11/16 in x 17 in x 16 in (154.15 cm x 43.18 cm x 40.64 cm)
Gift of Robert and Lillian Montalto Bohlen
Ancestral Shrine Figure (Female)
carved iroko wood and kaolin
43 15/16 in x 9 in x 8 11/16 in (111.6 cm x 22.86 cm x 22.07 cm)
Gift of Avery Z. Eliscu
Ancestral Shrine Figure (Male)
carved wood
4 ft. 8 15/16 in. x 12 13/16 in. x 8 7/8 in. (144.5 x 32.5 x 22.5 cm);4 ft. 8 15/16 in. x 12 13/16 in. x 8 7/8 in. (144.5 x 32.5 x 22.5 cm)
This imposing, anthropomorphic Songye <em>nkisi</em>, or power figure, stands upright and features an assemblage of man-made, vegetal, and animal components. Most strikingly, a large antelope horn protrudes vertically from the figure’s head, and two animal teeth have been affixed to the corners of its mouth giving the appearance of fangs. Bearing wide, alert eyes, this fearsome figure is enswathed by civet and monkey skin. Horns, including a smaller one inserted into a larger one, have been tightly strapped around the figure’s chest. Also attached to the figure are seed pods, an ax blade, and glass beads. A medicine bundle carrying feathers and a horn hangs behind the figure's back.
Power Figure
wood, civet and monkey skin, woven vegetable fiber, feathers, seed pods, animal teeth, antelope horns, glass beads, metal
24 7/16 in x 11 13/16 in x 9 13/16 in (62 cm x 30 cm x 25 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
This small power figure features a naturalistic human face engulfed in layers of multi-media attachments, which create an imposing visual effect. The figure wears a blue turban wrapped around its head that binds bundles of medicinal substances and is crowned with several feathers. It also dons a metal necklace and a small bone dangles from the arm. The lower body is covered in fiber and a skirt of long leather strips. Possessing eyes encrusted with glass, the figure stands on top of a carved wooden turtle and holds the tip of a curved piece of wood in its mouth, the other end of which terminates in its clutched right hand. A large medicine pack, topped with a round mirror, is affixed to the figure's torso, which is thickly coated with resin and red pigment.
Power Figure
wood, mirror, glass, hide, fiber, feathers, resin, pigment, cloth, raffia and bone
18 1/2 in x 17 5/16 in x 15 3/4 in (47 cm x 44 cm x 40 cm);18 1/2 in x 17 5/16 in x 15 3/4 in (47 cm x 44 cm x 40 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
This zoomorphic Luba <em>nkisi mihake</em>, or “malevolent” power object, depicts a dog of a fierce and formidable character. Sculpted out of wood, the dog has been carefully covered in animal fur, creating a graphic mimetic effect. The dog’s tail stands nearly upright, signaling a commanding and attentive posture. Most striking, however, are the antelope horns, stuffed with medicinal substances, as well as the metal blades that have been affixed throughout the dog’s trunk and underbelly.
Power Figure
wood, wicker, metal, antelope horns, fur, cord, seeds, and nuts
11 13/16 in x 6 3/4 in x 4 13/16 in (30 cm x 17.15 cm x 12.22 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
This wooden&nbsp;figure depicts a female with a strikingly large, balloon-shaped animal skin sack tied above the crown of her head. An animal horn has been embedded within this massive sack. Representative of the northern style of Kusu carvings which is known to have sharp, angular forms, this&nbsp;<em>kakudji</em>&nbsp;features an ovoid head; a rounded, convex face and forehead; large ears; prominent cheekbones; coffeebean-shaped eyes within large ocular cavities; a well-defined, pointed nose; an elliptical mouth with slightly parted lips; a long, cylindrical neck; arms bent at the elbow, forming a 90-degree angle at the waist; and breasts that are situated nearly at shoulder level. The figure possesses a swollen belly, indicating pregnancy, and hence, representing the themes of maternity, fertility, and the continuation of the lineage. Animal skin enshrouds the female&rsquo;s lower body. Tukula powder, derived from the camwood tree and used to consecrate&nbsp;<em>kakudji</em>, appears on the figure&rsquo;s
Power Figure
wood, vegetable fiber, tukula powder, animal skin, and animal horn
17 3/10 in x 5 ½ in x 5 ½ in (43.97 cm x 13.97 cm x 13.97 cm);13 ⅜ in (33.97 cm)
Gift of Candis and Helmut Stern
Cloth figure of a human, bound around human remains. The figure is in a seated position with arms outstretched. The torso and neck are cylindrical and elongated.
Reliquary figure (muzidi)
dyed woven cotton cloth, vegetable fiber, cane, wood pegs
15 7/8 x 14 11/16 x 9 1/16 in. (40.3 x 37.2 x 22.9 cm)
Anonymous Gift


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September 24, 2021 12:20 p.m.


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