Igbo. <em>Cloth (Ukara)</em>, 20th century. Cotton, indigo, 60 × 79 × 1/16 in. (152.4 × 200.7 × 0.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased with funds given by Frieda and Milton F. Rosenthal, 1990.132.6. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: , 1990.132.6_overall_PS4.jpg)

Cloth (Ukara)


Medium: Cotton, indigo

Dates:20th century

Dimensions: 60 × 79 × 1/16 in. (152.4 × 200.7 × 0.2 cm)



Accession Number: 1990.132.6

Image: 1990.132.6_overall_PS4.jpg,

Catalogue Description:
Stitch-resist, indigo-dyed blue and white patterned commericial cotton. Patterns are known genertically as Nsibidi and refer to important objects and secret knowledge kept by Ekpe (Leopard) society members. Patterns include the leopard, double gong, hand, tortoise. Raffia is used to stitch resist pattern; cloth is then dyed in indigo; and the raffia removed. Some evidence of raffia remains on this cloth. Ukara clothes are used by Ekpe Society members as wrappers, as hangings, and in funerals. Pieces of cloth are joined by machine stitching; unfinished hems.

Brooklyn Museum