Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

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oba figure
  • unknown Bini maker
  • oba figure, late 1800s–1975
  • Where object was made: Nigeria
  • brass, casting
  • Object Height/Width/Depth: 53.5 x 19 x 21 cm
    Object Height/Width/Depth: 21 1/16 x 7 1/2 x 8 1/4 in
  • Gift of Mr. and Mrs. H. Kenneth Palmer
  • On view: Stewart Gallery, 406, C1
  • 2007.3047

The standing figure of an oba (king) was made from bright brass. He wears a diamond patterned headdress with a pointed projection in the middle of the top of the head. It is decorated with grooves and a smaller projection at the top. There are two blade-like projections that curve slightly forward. There is a forward directed hook at the base of each and two long strands hanging to his hips. The oba is wearing a dress-like garment in an overall diamond pattern. He is wearing neckrings, two long strands across his chest, and a long necklace and shorter necklaces with oval pendants. He carries and eben (sword) in his right hand, with his arm bent. He is wearing bracelets, leg bands and anklets. The necklaces and diamond pattern of the headdress and tunic are possibly stylized coral beads.