About this artwork
This type of robe was worn by chiefs, dignitaries, emirs, and other high-ranking men in 19th-century West Africa. It marked the wearer’s standing and prestige, and also identified him as a Muslim. The talismanic motifs were typically designed and stitched by Qur’anic scholars who found inspiration in Arabic texts. Soninke women no longer practice these embroidery styles and indigo-dyeing techniques, which impacted the weaving traditions of a vast region north and south of the Sahara.
- Robe (Boubou Lomasa)
- Handspun cotton, indigo dye; polychrome silk and cotton; strip weave, hand embroidery
- 124.5 x 194.3 cm (49 x 76 1/2 in.)
- Arts of Africa and the Americas Curatorial Discretionary and Vedder Price Kaufmann & Kammholtz Endowment funds