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.
- Gabon (Object made in)
- Wood and copper
- H.: 39.4 cm (15 1/2 in.)
- Frederick W. Renshaw Acquisition Fund; Robert Allerton and Ada Turnbull Hertle endowments; Robert Allerton Income Fund; Gladys N. Anderson Endowment