Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

  • unknown Babwa maker
  • shield, late 1800s–1908
  • Where object was made: Angola
  • wood, plant fiber, string, buckskin, carving, weaving
  • Object Length/Width/Depth: 125 x 42 x 10 cm
    Object Length/Width/Depth: 49 3/16 x 16 1/2 x 3 7/8 in
  • Gift of Claude D. Brown
  • Not on display
  • 2007.4182

The wave shaped shield is made of plant fibers woven over thin strips of wood. The front of the shield protrudes at each end and in the center where the handle is. There are lengthwise stripes on both sides of the shield in alternating light tan and light reddish brown. There is woven dark brown plant fiber along the edge and running between the wooden strips of the shield, and woven through the tan and reddish brown plant fibers at either end. The handle is carved from dark brown wood and the grip is carved with v-shapes at either end and horizontal lines in the middle. The handle is attached with six plant fiber loops. A strap of woven string is attached to the back of the shield on either side of the handle. A small strip of buckskin is attached to one end of the back.