X81.1568a,b Carved figure

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Carved figure
Multiheaded bush spirit surmounted by an animal
Ijo peoples
H: 167.6 cm, W: 34.2 cm (H: 65.9 in, W: 13.4 in)
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of William Lloyd Davis and the Rogers Family Foundation. X81.1568a,b


The detachable headdress worn by this four-headed figure supports a four-legged animal, which in turn dominates a smaller quadruped. The predator may be a leopard, an animal symbolically linked to warfare, or a dog. The latter are thought to accompany spirits as “guides.”

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 106