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African Art

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Title: African Art


1
African Art
Nok Art
African Art 1000-1800
Igbo-Ukwu Art
Ife Art
Benin Art
Djenne Art
Sapi Art
Great Zimbabwe
2
African Art
Beliefs or practices shared by many African
societies that give rise to art images. Honoring
ancestors and worshipping animal
deities. Elevating rulers to sacred
status. Consulting diviners or fortune tellers.
Nomadic peoples depicted thousands of animals as
well as rituals held by the hunters and
gatherers. Farmers, however, created figural
sculptures that were housed in shrines to
legendary ancestors or nature deities, and the
regalia, art, and architecture of kings and
courts projected wealth and power.
3
Nok Art
4
Some of the oldest art in the world were the
painted animals found in The Apollo 11 cave in
Namibia. The material Nok sculptors used was
Terracotta.
Nok Head from Jemaa, Nigeria 5th century
B.C.E.terracotta9 13/16 in. high
5
Stylistic characteristics of their
sculpture Faces are expressive with alert
eyes. Some details were carved while others were
modeled. An (unknown) earlier tradition of
woodcarving may predate the terracotta sculpture
tradition.
Nok Head from Jemaa, Nigeria 5th century
B.C.E.terracotta14 3/16 in. high
6
AFRICAN ART 1000-1800
Oba Sacred king in the Benin culture. Olakun In
the Benin culture, god of the sea, wealth, and
creativity. Queen Mother Iyoba, the mother of
Esigie, an Oba of the 16th century. He created
the title of Queen Mother for her and built her a
separate palace and court after she helped him in
warfare. Types of figures that were commonly
represented on the terracottas found in Jenne
Equestrians. Male and female couples. Emaciated
and diseased people with lesions and swellings.
7
Igbo-Ukwu Art
8
Equestrian figure on fly-whisk hilt from
Igbo-Ukwu, Nigeria 9th to 10th centurycopper
-alloy bronze6 3/4 in. high
9
Ife Art
10
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11
The major art form of the Ife Naturalistic
figure sculpture, most employed in the service of
kingship. The style used to portray the Ife
king Fleshy modeling of the body and idealized
naturalism that approaches portraiture. The head
is so large in proportion to his body because in
Yoruba culture, the head is the locus of wisdom,
destiny, and the essence of being.
King from Ife, Nigeria 11th to 12th centuryzinc
brass18 1/2 in. high
12
Benin Art
13
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14
Ivory belt mask of a Queen Mother (Idia) from
Benin, Nigeria mid-16th centuryivory and iron9
3/8 in. high
15
The symbolic meaning of the leopards that flank
the Benin king is the obas power over all
creatures.
Altar of the Hand from Benin, Nigeria 17th to
18th centurybrass17 1/2 in. high
16
Stylistic characteristics of Benin art. The head
is emphasized and larger than the other body
parts (one of the kings praise names is great
head). Symmetrical hierarchical compositions
centered on the oba, who was dominant in Benin
culture, were common.
Warrior Chief and Attendants from Benin,
Nigeria ca. 1550-1650brass18 3/4 in. high
17
Djenne Art
18
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19
Mother and Child from Djenne, Mali 11th to 14th
centuryterracotta11 in. high
20
Eastern façade of Friday Mosque Djenne, Mali 13th
century, rebuilt 1906-07
21
Sapi Art
22
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23
Sapi warrior from Sierra Leone 15th
centuryserpentine7 1/2 in. high
24
The saltcellar shown in was the result of African
Sapi artists, who lived on the Atlantic coast of
Africa. They worked for patrons from
Portugal. The material used was Ivory.
Master of the Symbolic ExecutionSaltcellar Sapi-P
ortuguese from Sierra Leone 15th to 16th
centuryivory16 7/8 in. high
25
Great Zimbabwe
26
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27
IDENTIFY COMPLETELY Head from Lydenburg, South
Africa. 6th to 8th century. 12 15/16 high.
South African Museum, Capetown, SA STYLISTIC
PERIOD or CULTURE Lydenburg art SUBJECT/ICONOGRA
PHY Thinly open oval eyes, slightly projecting
mouth, nose, and ears. Raised bands decorating
the faces. Backs of the heads are adorned with
incised linear patterns. STYLE/TECHNIQUE Jar
like shape, lips, eyes, etc. made by placing thin
clay fillets over the head shape. SIGNIFICANCE/FUN
CTION/PURPOSE Rings were viewed as a sign of
prosperity by many African peoples. Used in
initiation rights and possibly worn during
initiation ceremonies.
28
Conical Tower from Great Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe 15th
century
29
The function of the buildings of Great
Zimbabwe The main complex was most likely a
royal residence with special areas for the ruler
and his family and nobles, and commoners living
outside those areas. Trade goods found in this
structure indicate active trade with Persia, The
Near East, and China.
Conical Tower from Great Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe 15th
century
30
Symbolism One theory is that they represent the
first wifes ancestors, both male and female as
represented by crocodile and circle symbols or
they may have represented previous rulers who
could have acted as messengers between the living
and the dead, as well as between the sky and the
earth.
Bird with crocodile image on top of stone
monolith from Great Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe 15th
centurysoap stonebird image 14 1/2 in. high
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