About this artwork
Made for a large altar honoring ancestors, this figure’s crusty surface resulted from repeated ritual applications of sacrificial materials including animal blood, millet porridge, plant juice, and oil, infusing it with a vital energy. Its braided hairstyle, thin beard, amulet-pendant, and ritual staff (on his left shoulder) suggest that this figure portrays a high-ranking man. The extremely dry environment of the cave where it was stored helped to preserve it.
- Male Figure
- Mali (Object made in)
- Wood, pigment, and sacrificial material
- 98.5 × 15.5 × 13.9 cm (39 1/4 × 6 1/8 × 5 1/2 in.)
- Janie Brill Memorial Fund; Major Acquisitions Centennial Endowment