Male twin figure (Ère Ìbejì) with tunic
Arts of Africa
Wood, pigment, cotton cloth, cowrie shells, glass beads
late 19th or early 20th century
10 3/4 x 6 3/4 x 4 1/4in. (27.3 x 17.1 x 10.8cm) (show scale)
Gift of Drs. James J. Strain and Gladys Witt Strain
Standing male figure with plaited hair, beaded necklace, and cloak made of hand-woven blue and white cloth covered with cowrie shells attached overall. Condition good, shows use
This item is not on view
Yorùbá artist. Male twin figure (Ère Ìbejì) with tunic, late 19th or early 20th century. Wood, pigment, cotton cloth, cowrie shells, glass beads, 10 3/4 x 6 3/4 x 4 1/4in. (27.3 x 17.1 x 10.8cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Drs. James J. Strain and Gladys Witt Strain, 2001.122.1a-b. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.2001.122.1a-b_overall.jpg)
. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2014
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What was the significance of cowrie shells in Yorùbá art?
Cowrie shells represent wealth in Yorùbá art. At times they were even used as currency! They still retain connotations of value and prestige.