|Title||Jukun, Koro Figural Container Four Faces Nigeria 33 Inch|
|Type of Object||Carving, container|
|Country of Origin||Nigeria|
|People||Jukun, Koro, Jaba|
|Approximate Age||20th century|
|Dimensions||33 inches H. x 7 inches W. x 6.5 inches D.|
|Overall Condition||Fair. Most of our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners. Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use. We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings. Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.|
|Damage/Repair||Chipped bowl, chips and shallow cracks in places|
This well worn figure is probably from the Jukun, Jaba or Koro, who live north of the confluence of the Benue and Niger Rivers in one of the more poorly documented areas of Nigeria. Only a few objects have been attributed to either the these people although they have produced impressive and outstanding artworks including headdresses and a particular form of figural carving such as this one that serves as a cup for the ritual drinking of palm wine. This example was most likely made by a Jaba sculptor: the hairstyle in the form of a crest , the finial features on the face are observed on some rare Jaba figures. Similar figures /cups are also found among the Koro and Jukun where they are known under the name of gbine. Gbine are used during annual ancestor rites and during second burials. Palm wine or millet beer would be poured from the cup-like shape that forms the central abdomen of the figure. These cups are today highly prized by collectors due to their rarity and unique forms. Most often carved as female figures, "gbine" would often be embellished with red seeds, beads, or bronze rings to replicate jewelry worn by the women. The patina on her surface shows traces of long use.
Recommended Reading: Sieber, Roy. "Sculpture of Northern Nigeria," 1961.Sieber, R. and Tony Vevers. "Interaction: The art styles of the Benue River and East Nigeria." 1974.