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Tripod Chair

A work made of wood.

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  • A work made of wood.

Date:

Early/mid–20th century

Artist:

Tiv or Jukun
Nigeria
Coastal West Africa

About this artwork

Based on the natural branching of a tree, this strikingly simple tripod chair seamlessly unites form with function. A horizontal plank placed across inverted limbs creates the chair’s seat. In Nigeria’s Benue River Valley, chairs are considered personal possessions and indicators of social rank. This chair was probably made to furnish a family’s reception room, where adults would eat, lounge, and receive guests. The smooth, glossy surface suggests regular use; it may have served as the favored seat of an elder, who sat upon it to rest and offer counsel.

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Arts of Africa

Culture

Tiv

Title

Tripod Chair

Origin

Nigeria

Date

1901–1975

Medium

Wood

Dimensions

55.9 x 86.4 x 86.4 cm (22 x 34 x 34 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Marshall Field

Reference Number

1997.462

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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