Yoruba Staff for the Cult of the Earth (Edan Ogboni)
Yoruba, Nigeria, Early 20th C.

PROVENANCE: Bernard Brister, Dallas, TX. Noble and Jean Endicott, New York. PUBLISHED: "African Art from Dallas Collections" 1972, figure 59.

Yoruba staffs made specifically for the Edan Obgoni are extremely iconic. The figures are linear and provide a symbolic spiritual function. This example is made of brass and exhibits a three figured motif. The larger figure, male, is adorned with a beard and depicted in a seated position with two smaller female (?) figures at each side. There is a chain attached to the top of the figure which would have connected this staff to its pair, which would then be worn around an initiate's neck. The Edan would have been presented to a male society member during an initiation ceremony.

Height: 21 " in. / Brass
IN 2-9-14 / SOLD