Pair of Sandals
Arts of Africa
These sandals, carved entirely out of wood, have a remarkable incised geometric pattern covering their surfaces—an example of Swahili artists’ adaptation of Islamic design motifs circulating in East Africa along the Indian Ocean coast. A label on the underside of one sandal suggests that this pair may have once belonged to Fumo Omari, a sultan of the coastal state of Witu between 1890 and 1894.
late 19th century
A: 4 × 3 1/2 × 9 11/16 in. (10.2 × 8.9 × 24.6 cm)
B: 3 3/4 × 3 1/2 × 9 11/16 in. (9.5 × 8.9 × 24.6 cm) (show scale)
On the underside of the left sandal, in black ink: "Sandals formerly the property of FUM OMARI the rebel Chief of WITU". A small octagonal paper label is adhered to the heel block with the words "African" written in pencil and "Swahili" written in blue ink.
Brooklyn Museum Collection
Pair of sandals carved of tan/brown color wood block, with a lath spindle-like toe grip (knob) of a darker chocolate brown wood that is pegged into the front section of the sandal block. A slim wedge has been driven into the peg which can be seen from the underside. Condition: both sandals are in fair and stable condition. There are several small chip losses at the edges of the sandal blocks and at several of the ridges of the spindle spool. Cracks along the woodgrain are decernible on the undersides of both sandals. Accumulations of dust in the recesses of the carved design areas.
This item is not on view
Swahili. Pair of Sandals, late 19th century. Wood, A: 4 × 3 1/2 × 9 11/16 in. (10.2 × 8.9 × 24.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Museum Collection, X1054a-b. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: , X1054a-b_SL3.jpg)
overall, NP recommended; casted transparency, X1054a-b_SL3.jpg., 2017
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license
. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.
Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact email@example.com
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.