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Tray (Opon Ifa)

A work made of wood and pigment.

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  • A work made of wood and pigment.

Date:

Mid–20th century, probably 1930s

Artist:

Areogun (c. 1880-1954)
Yoruba
Osi-Ilorin, Nigeria
Coastal West Africa

About this artwork

Used by a male or female diviner, this tray features the image of Eshu, the divine mediator between the spirit and human realms. His face is framed by mothers kneeling to make offerings in bowls. A priest holding a staff below one of them refers to Osanyin, the deity of herbal medicine. The carved band of cowrie shells recalls the real shells that are cast onto the tray during a divination session.

On View

Arts of Africa, Gallery 137

Culture

Yoruba

Artist

Areogun of Osi-Ilorin

Title

Tray (Opon Ifa)

Places

Nigeria (Object made in), Africa (Object made in)

Date

1930-1939

Medium

Wood and pigment

Dimensions

5 × 45 cm (2 × 17 3/4 in.)

Credit Line

Laura T. Magnuson Endowment

Reference Number

1999.289

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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