X76.1856 Male shrine figure

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Male shrine figure
Urhobo peoples
Wood and pigment
H: 130.8 cm, W: 42.6 cm (H: 51 in, W: 16.7 in)
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Mrs. W. Thomas Davis, in memory of W. Thomas Davis. X76.1856


Accouterments such as beads worn low on the shoulders, a top hat, and thick ivory cuffs emphasize this spirit’s position as a titled leader, rather than suggesting military power and aggression. In contrast, the medicine gourd worn prominently on the chest demonstrates the figure’s possession of powerful, herbal medicines that guarantee his invincibility in battle.

Source: Anderson, Martha G. and Peek, Philip M. ed. (2002): “Ways of the Rivers: Arts and Environment of the Niger Delta”‚ Los Angeles, UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History. page 126