Skip to Content

Open today 10–11 a.m. members |
11 a.m.–6 p.m. public. Learn more.

Head

Black carved, painted wood sculpture of a human head, long neck.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

Image actions

  • Black carved, painted wood sculpture of a human head, long neck.

Date:

Mid–late 19th century

Artist:

Fang
Gabon
Central Africa

About this artwork

The neck of this head was once partially inserted into the lid of a cylindrical bark container holding selected skull and skeletal remains of an honored ancestor. Stored in the corner of a man’s sleeping room, the sculpture and box protected the ancestor’s bones and kept his power within reach of his descendants. The copper-alloy inserts in the eyes reflect light in the dark, and would have startled any intruder while adding to the head’s aura.

Status

On View, Gallery 137

Department

Arts of Africa

Culture

Fang

Title

Head

Origin

Gabon

Date

1850–1899

Medium

Wood and copper

Dimensions

H. 39.4 cm (15 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Frederick W. Renshaw Acquisition Fund; Robert Allerton and Ada Turnbull Hertle endowments; Robert Allerton Income Fund; Gladys N. Anderson Endowment

Reference Number

2006.127

IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

Learn more.

https://api.artic.edu/api/v1/artworks/187528/manifest.json

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.

Share

Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions

Share