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  • Ancient Africa, Page 2 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    Djenné style Equestrian figure Clay pigment H 24 4 cm 5 5 8 Indiana University Art Museum 76 98 1 In other parts of Africa architecture is often made of mud which disintegrates if not periodically repaired Objects of carved stone fired clay and cast metals do not disintegrate so easily and when carefully recovered from archaeological sites provide some of our best evidence for the sophistication of ancient African kingdoms This terracotta equestrian figure from the Middle Niger River for example could provide valuable clues about the establishment of ancient kingdoms such as Mali in the 12 th or 13 th centuries CE or A D The use of cavalry was important in the establishment of several kingdoms and empires in this Sahel region of West Africa and figures such as this must reflect their existence Many of the Middle Niger terracottas date from the founding of Mali but as none of the equestrians have been found in an archaeological context rather than from looted site we may never be able to make the connection Prev 1 2 3 Next Page See All View all images in the media gallery Subtopics Nok Igbo Ukwu Djenné Ife Jebba Island Esie

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/ancient-africa/?start=1 (2016-02-13)
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  • Ancient Africa, Page 3 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    National Museum Lagos 48 36 1 Photo by Dirk Bakker Fortunately the situation is not so grim throughout Africa and there are many ancient civilizations that have been carefully investigated through archaeological and other methods Written accounts by visitors in Arabic and European languages exist for some of the more recent civilizations and are very useful Oral histories are also useful and ethnographic analogy when carefully applied can be extremely helpful Archaeology is making advances in many areas including dating techniques Former methods of only examining the lifestyles and prestige materials of the elite are giving way to a broader view of all levels of an ancient culture and a better understanding of the interactions that occurred both within and outside the cultures Material objects and art have always been an active component of culture and so this section will examine the art of a number of ancient cultures to obtain a glimpse at that process Chief Aiyevbekpen Ero the Ero of Benin one of the seven Uzama wearing coral regalia Ero s palace Urubi Benin City Nigeria October 1981 Photo by Barbara W Blackmun Prev 1 2 3 Next Subtopic Nok See All View all images in the media

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/ancient-africa/?start=2 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 2 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    University of Iowa Democratic Republic of the Congo Lele Bashilele Leele peoples Mask Wood pigment H 29 cm 11 3 8 The University of Iowa Museum of Art The Stanley Collection X1990 602 In Africa most art is created by people who understand that the path and meaning of life is determined by the supernatural world The blessings or curses of the spirits can mean the difference between success and failure health and disease or peace and conflict By maintaining balance between the human and supernatural worlds the blessings of the spirits are secured and their unpredictable nature is controlled Among many African peoples misfortune hardship and conflict are regarded as states of instability Such traits of life often regarded as afflictions are dealt with through art forms such as this Lele mask that help the invisible world of the spirits become visible and more manageable by humans Through these healing devices the spirits who control or counteract negative forces can help bring health and well being back into a community Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Next Page See All View all images in the media gallery Subtopics Spirit Embodiments Rituals of Healing Chapters Everyday

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=1 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 3 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    human and spirit worlds the concept of health and well being is often bound to religious or philosophical systems of thought Healing in Africa is not far removed from the systems of holistic healing adopted by people in Western nations in recent years Like holistic healing in the United States and other parts of the world African notions of health and disease focus on balance between the body and spirit

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=2 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 4 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    bridge the gap between the human and spirit worlds and to help bring about cosmological balance and well being Among the Yoruba peoples egungun masquerades honor important ancestors and engage their continued participation in the affairs of the living Packets of medicine often attached to the masks or incorporated into the costumes provide both protection and ase vital force to the dancer and his performance The field photo shows how

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=3 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 5 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    of physical well being from spiritual well being can cause serious harm to an individual or community Consequently the interaction of humans spirits and deities is needed for health and prosperity Throughout Africa people compose figures of supernatural beings such as these carved Dogon primordial ancestral figures who serve as mediators between the natural and supernatural worlds Through such figures the ancestors can provide their living descendants with health well

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=4 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 6 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    peoples Biteki figure Wood H 49 cm 19 The University of Iowa Museum of Art The Stanley Collection X1986 425 In many African languages particularly in the Bantu languages of central and eastern Africa the concept of health is metaphorically linked to such notions as balance purity coolness order strength or force In contrast sickness is associated with conflict pollution heat chaos or misfortune and suffering Janzen 1994 165 When the balance between the natural and supernatural worlds is threatened or disrupted the inevitable result is human affliction Afflictions include physical illness drought infertility even failure in school or business Hence objects such as this Yaka power figure are used to capture contain and manipulate the supernatural powers of spirit beings When honored by the living with libations sacrifices and other ritual attentions the spirits can intervene to help restore balance and security bring good fortune and health and help the living come to terms with the precarious nature of life Biteke Yaka figures for the treatment of a hereditary curse Democratic Republic of the Congo 1976 Photo by Arthur Bourgeois Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Next Page See All View all images in the

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=5 (2016-02-13)
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  • Arts of Healing, Page 7 - Art & Life in Africa - The University of Iowa Museum of Art
    University University of Iowa Côte d Ivoire Baule peoples Figure Wood H 77 5 cm 30 1 2 Seattle Art Museum Gift of Katherine White and the Boeing Company 81 17 233 In most parts of sub Saharan Africa figures such as this Baule figure are used to capture and embody symbols or representations of spirit beings Accompanied by regular ceremonies offerings or performances the power objects can be used as tools that invoke the aid of the spirits in establishing well being and balance At times it is the spirits themselves who cause misfortunes as a means of alerting humans to their existence and demanding ritual attentions In this manner the arts of healing can determine realign or sometimes even change the path of life Regardless of the form in which the healing events occur it is in the interest of both humans and spirit beings to interact with each other for their mutual benefit for it is only through their interdependence that the order of both worlds is secured Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Next Page See All View all images in the media gallery Subtopics Spirit Embodiments Rituals of Healing Chapters Everyday

    Original URL path: https://africa.uima.uiowa.edu/chapters/arts-of-healing/?start=6 (2016-02-13)
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