About this artwork
Africans have cast and forged tools, weapons, and other metal objects for over 5,000 years, long before the earliest recorded contact with the Europeans in the second half of the 15th century. When trade routes opened up, Africans were able to buy iron rods and ingots of copper and brass that could be melted, which cut out the arduous task of refining raw ores. Out of the increased availability of raw materials emerged an increased repertoire of intricately and delicately designed copper alloy work, including jewelry.
This necklace, composed of fourteen miniature heads welded onto a circular structure with a single clasp, would most likely have been worn by a member of the royal court at Bamum.
—Permanent Collection Object Description
Currently Off View
- Arts of Africa
- Copper alloy
- Diam. 31.8 cm (12 1/2 in.)
- Gift of Muriel Kallis Newman