Arts of Africa
On View: African Storage Annex, East Gallery, 1st Floor
The Boa and their neighbors, the Lega, carve spoons of elephant ivory and bone. Among the Lega, these are not used for eating but as emblems of the two highest levels of the Bwami society. They are also used symbolically to “feed” masked dancers of the Bwami during performances. (To learn more about Bwami, see the case with three hats to the left.)
Museum Expedition 1922, Robert B. Woodward Memorial Fund
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Boa. Spoon (Kalukili), 19th century. Ivory, 6 3/4 x 2 3/16 in. (17.1 x 5.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Museum Expedition 1922, Robert B. Woodward Memorial Fund, 22.1223. Creative Commons-BY
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Spoon with deep oval bowl and short handle that has two wide curved supports joined at the top by a triangular bridge. Handle side of bowl is pointed. Ivory has a warm golden patina.
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