Arts of Africa
The leather seat, extensive use of upholstery tacks, inclined angle of the backrest, and finials of this chair are all based on seventeenth-century European examples. The flourishes on the diagonal arms and the elaborately carved openwork back are baroque. The X-form of the legs suggests a folding chair.
The word akonkromfi means “praying mantis” and probably refers to the articulated form of both the insect and the chair. Chairs such as this are purely ceremonial and indicate prestige. They are used exclusively by Asante chiefs and royalty on state occasions.
Wood, copper alloy, leather
32 1/2 x 23 x 27 in. (82.6 x 58.4 x 68.6 cm) (show scale)
Purchased with funds given by Marcia and John Friede, Dr. and Mrs. Abbott A. Lippman, Mr. and Mrs. Milton F. Rosenthal and Carll H. de Silver Fund
Chair frame is carved in wood and, except for the leather seat, is entirely covered with brass sheet. The sheet is decorated with various stamped and incised designs. Brass nails are arranged in a double row along the edges of the sheet covered frame. Raised brass semi-spherical shapes are attached at regular intervals over frame. The underside of the leather seat is of leather lattice-work. The legs are in "x"-form and extend outwards in graceful curves. The back has an openwork motif which is an elaboration of a basic design of a concentric circle enclosed in a square. A series of large decorative loops extend from the arms of the chair. The finials at the top of the chair are unmatched and appear to be of a different metal and workmanship than the rest of the chair. Each finial rests on small brass plaques with a raised design. Brass covered projections with rounded ends extend from each side of the seat. CONDITION: Good.
This item is not on view
Asante. Chair (Akonkromfi), 19th century. Wood, copper alloy, leather, 32 1/2 x 23 x 27 in. (82.6 x 58.4 x 68.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased with funds given by Marcia and John Friede, Dr. and Mrs. Abbott A. Lippman, Mr. and Mrs. Milton F. Rosenthal and Carll H. de Silver Fund, 85.200.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 85.200.2_bw.jpg)
overall, 85.200.2_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license
. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.
Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact email@example.com
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.