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Part of Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas
Date: 16th–20th centuryAccession Number: 1978.412.322
Date: 19th–mid-20th centuryAccession Number: 1978.412.489
El Anatsui (Ghanaian, born Anyako, 1944)
Date: 2006Accession Number: 2007.96
Date: 18th–early 19th centuryAccession Number: 1977.394.15
Date: 13th centuryAccession Number: 1981.218
Date: 15th–20th centuryAccession Number: 1979.206.121
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At the entrance to the African collection in the Samuel H. and Linda M. Lindenbaum Gallery is the Museum's iconic Kongo Power Figure from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a formidable monumental work that evokes a force of jurisprudence made present in the form of a presiding authority. This large gallery houses works related to Mande cultures that extend across present-day Mali, Guinea, Burkina Faso, and Côte d'Ivoire.
Among these is the earliest work from Africa in the collection, a twelfth-century figure in fired clay from the ancient urban center of Djenne situated in Mali's Inland Niger Delta region. Other highlights include figurative wood sculpture for altars and shrines, masking traditions relating to initiation associations, and decorative arts created by Dogon, Bamana, and Senufo carvers.
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