Male Twin Figure (Ibeji)

Unidentified Yoruba maker

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mid-20th century

Wood with accoutrements of organic material

Overall: 10 5/8 × 3 5/16 × 3 1/4 in. (27 × 8.4 × 8.2 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Gift of the Estates of Catherine L. and Robert A. McKennan, Class of 1925

985.20.26445

Geography

Place Made: Nigeria, Western Africa, Africa

Period

20th century

Object Name

Figure

Research Area

Africa

Not on view

Label

Twin figures typically come in sets, although single figures may be found. Twins are considered spiritually powerful in Yoruba culture, and thus are treated with deference. Twin figures are carved if the individual dies in infancy, as an access point for their spirit. They are decorated with extravagant hairstyles and jewelry, and the mother is expected to provide ritual care such as bathing, adorning, and feeding the figures. Often the heads of the figures will be covered with indigo dye as a symbolic gesture meant to calm the twin’s spirit. - Lydia Davis ’23, Homma Family Intern

From the 2023 exhibition Homecoming: Domesticity and Kinship in Global African Art, curated by Alexandra Thomas, Curatorial Research Associate

Course History

First Year Student Enrichment Program – Cultures, Identities and Belongings, Colleen Lannon, Summer 2023

First Year Student Enrichment Program - Cultures, Identities and Belongings, Mokhtar Bouba, Summer 2023

Philosophy 1.11, Art: True, Beautiful, Nasty, John Kulvicki, Summer 2023

Writing 2.05, Why Write, Anyway?, Erkki Mackey, Fall 2023

Writing 5.24, Photographic Representations, Amanda Wetsel, Fall 2023

Writing 5.25, Photographic Representations, Amanda Wetsel, Fall 2023

Anthropology 31.01, Women's Gender, and Sexuality Studies 36.01, Gender in Cross Cultural Perspectives, Sabrina Billings, Fall 2023

Anthropology 55.01, Anthropology of Global Health, Anne Sosin, Fall 2023

Art History 89.06, Senior Seminar: Theory and Method, Adedoyin Teriba, Fall 2023

Creative Writing 10.02, Writing and Reading Fiction, Katherine Crouch, Fall 2023

Geography 31.01, Postcolonial Geographies, Erin Collins, Fall 2023

Humanities 2.01, The Modern Labyrinth, Dennis Washburn, Paul Carranza, Ainsley Morse, Laura Edmondson, Winter 2024

Writing 5.06, Image and Text, Becky Clark, Winter 2024

Writing 5.07, Image and Text, Becky Clark, Winter 2024

College Course 21.01, What's In Your Shoebox?, Francine A'Ness and Mokhtar Bouba, Spring 2024

College Course 21.01, What's In Your Shoebox?, Francine A'Ness and Mokhtar Bouba, Spring 2024

Exhibition History

Death and Dying: Selections from the Permanent Collection, Harrington Gallery Teaching Exhibition, Anthropology 55, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, February 11-March 26, 1995.

Homecoming: Domesticity and Kinship in Global African Art, Harteveldt Family Gallery, Owen Robertson Cheatham Gallery, and Northeast Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, Hanover, New Hampshire, July 22, 2023–May 25, 2024.

This record is part of an active database that includes information from historic documentation that may not have been recently reviewed. Information may be inaccurate or incomplete. We also acknowledge some language and imagery may be offensive, violent, or discriminatory. These records reflect the institution’s history or the views of artists or scholars, past and present. Our collections research is ongoing.

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