Bronze Head of an Oni


3 in stock

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The Benin Kingdom flourished in West Africa in the region of modern Nigeria from the 1100’s up to its destruction by the British in 1897.

Well known for their skill in the use of the lost wax process to create incredible bronze pieces, the Benin were magnificent craftsmen. The bronzes were made to depict a variety of scenes, including animals, fish, humans and scenes of court life. The sculptures were often cast in matching pairs (although each was individually made). Many were originally nailed to walls and pillars in the palace and throughout Benin City as decoration and also as offering instructive scenes of honor and protocol.

The leader of the Benin people was the Oba. His likeness was frequently portrayed in bronze as was that of the Queen Mother, especially in her later years.

The two busts here are faithful portrayals of the original depictions of the Oni – principle of the sea. As with the other authentic Benin bronzes, these beautiful pieces were cast using the lost wax process, and therefore are hollow. Each is a unique piece of art for collectors and ethnic home decorators.

Sold separately or as a pair.


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