Arts of Africa
On View: Double Take Installation, East Gallery, 1st Floor
ART OF PORTRAITS
While Western artists have historically often attempted to represent a person exactly how they look, many African artists instead have created portraits based on a specific physical or personality feature of the subject.
This terracotta head, most likely depicting the oni, or king, of ancient Ife, shows that Yoruba sculpture was already highly developed a thousand years ago. Ife court art interprets the human figure with extraordinary naturalism. This head, however, is not intended to be truly representational or realistic. It shows the oni in the prime of life, with no imperfections.
Fiegnon is composed chiefly of a discarded oil jerry can. Although Fiegnon may appear to resemble a mask, Romuald Hazoumé has noted that his works are, in fact, portraits—of particular individuals or of social types. With its long braids, this work represents a Fulani man Hazoumé met fishing in the lagoon where he found the oilcan.
The striking differences in style and materials in these two portraits may also reflect a marked gap in status and power between their two subjects.
Plastic, fiber (possibly synthetic), metal (copper wire)
11 x 8 x 8 1/2 in. (27.9 x 20.3 x 21.6 cm) (show scale)
Signed with black felt tip marker on the inner proper left edge, "Fiegnon 2011 H2HA 2000"
Caroline A.L. Pratt Fund
© artist or artist's estate
The Brooklyn Museum holds a non-exclusive license to reproduce images of this work of art from the rights holder named here.
The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
If you wish to contact the rights holder for this work, please email email@example.com
and we will assist if we can.
Romuald Hazoumé (Beninese, born 1962). Fiegnon, 2011. Plastic, fiber (possibly synthetic), metal (copper wire), 11 x 8 x 8 1/2 in. (27.9 x 20.3 x 21.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Caroline A.L. Pratt Fund, 2014.32.2. © artist or artist's estate (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2014.32.2_front_PS9.jpg)
front, 2014.32.2_front_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2014
"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.
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.