Collecting is a fundamental human trait but we must ensure that we collect what we love and learn as much as we can before and after we make a purchase. Learn how new and established traditional African art collectors assess authenticity and source pieces. View highlights from their extensive personal collections.
The Igbo from the town Afikpo in Nigeria make use of eleven wooden masks (ihu) during Okumkpa festivals, used to to celebrate the end of the dry season. Check out how each mask type is used along with their distinguishing features.
Epa masks are used by the Yoruba to promote health and wellbeing within a community by celebrating and honouring ancestors, cultural heroes and important individuals. The bi-annual, week-long Epa festival acknowledges the roles these individuals have played in building a successful community.
A number of diviners from African ethnic groups make use of staffs to communicate with the gods and to harness their healing or magical powers. The Yoruba for example believe the opa osanyin iron staff holds the power of Osanyin & Erinle (gods of divination and herbal medicine).