Female Devotee of Oshun - medium density wood - Yoruba - Nigeria

Female Devotee of Oshun - medium density wood - Yoruba - Nigeria
It dates to around 1940 - 1950 - Good condition, used with some signs of wear

Impressive Female Devotee of Oshun – Yoruba – Nigeria

In sound state, old and well-used piece. It dates to around 1940 - 1950.

Provenance: Former collection of Ian Auld, London. Bought from him in his shop on the Camden Passage Antique Market by P. Westerdijk around 1980.Collected by him in situ around 1950-1960.

What we have here is a kneeling female supporting her breasts with her hands in an attitude of devotion and servitude. Such figures were placed on altars or shrines erected in the towns and villages and dedicated to the deity Oshun, a female goddess in the extended pantheon of Yoruba Orishas or spiritual entities. This godly being was thought to be responsible for women’s fertility and was deemed to be able to protect against smallpox and similar attacks on the skin. Judging from the tribal markings and facial traits, this figure may well stem from Oyo State in N.W. Yoruba land.

Literature: William Fagg, John Pemberton 3rd and Bruce Holcombe (eds.): Yoruba Sculpture of West Africa, New York, 1982.

Dimensions: 53 x 13x 13 cm.
People / Region: The Oyo Yoruba live in S.W. Nigeria
Material: medium density wood.
Weight: 1.545 kg.

Sold with handwritten declaration of authenticity by Dr. P. Westerdijk, museum ethnologist and cultural anthropologist specialized, for over 50 years now, in the study of the material cultures in African nations that live south of the Sahara.

Lot details
Female Devotee of Oshun
Ethnic group/ culture
Region/ country
medium density wood
It dates to around 1940 - 1950
Good condition, used with some signs of wear
Sold with stand
53×13×13 cm
1.545 kg
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