Yoruba Oba’s Beaded Cushion

Yoruba Oba’s Beaded Cushion

Yoruba Oba's Beaded Cushion

Yoruba Oba's Beaded Cushion

The royal objects of the Oba represent some of the most elegant and colorful of all Yoruba art. This lively cushion is a perfect example of the high degree of artistry the beadworkers possess; both in design and the technical, time consuming work of applying the beads. Encircling the middle panel are six faces, perhaps representing the deity Esu, guardian of the ritual process. A wonderful floral pattern separates the faces, and also adorns the top surface area. The Oba’s name and the year 1939 is worked in white beads, a color associated with birth. There is such a lively sense of nature, of life and of energy exuding from this cushion it seems to speak a visual language all its own. The Oba may have used it to sit on, or rest his feet. Because he is considered a ‘divine’ being descended from gods, his body too is regarded as sacred and all objects he comes into contact with must be of the highest quality. This cushion is a proud symbol of a powerful king, and a beautiful work of art fit for a king.

Yoruba Oba’s Beaded Cushion – PF.4978
Origin: Southwestern Nigeria
Circa: 1939 AD
Dimensions: 6.5″ (16.5cm) high x 15.5″ (39.4cm) wide
Catalogue: V30
Collection: African
Style: Yoruba
Medium: Beads

By Art from Ancient Lands

Tunde

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