Memorial stela (waakaa or waga)
Arts of Africa
On View: American Art Galleries, 5th Floor, The Americas’ First Peoples, 4000 B.C.E.–1521 C.E.
The Konso of Ethiopia carve simple, elongated figures as part of sculptural groupings honoring the memory of prominent men. The groupings may include representations of the deceased, his wife, his defeated enemies, and even animals that he killed.
19th century or earlier
39 1/4 x 4 1/4 x 4 1/4 in. (99.7 x 10.8 x 10.8 cm) (show scale)
Gift of Serge and Jodie Becker-Patterson
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Konso artist. Memorial stela (waakaa or waga), 19th century or earlier. Wood, 39 1/4 x 4 1/4 x 4 1/4 in. (99.7 x 10.8 x 10.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Serge and Jodie Becker-Patterson
, 1998.124.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1998.124.1_edited_SL3.jpg)
overall, 1998.124.1_edited_SL3.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2014
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Standing female figure with pendulous breasts, arms held rigidly to sides. Figure has domed coiffure with curvilinear design, small sunken eyes, two inset teeth, a carved multi-strand necklace, and carved armbands. There are areas of red-ochre pigment, a finely worn surface, and old patina.
Condition: Overall good; heavily eroded from weathering.
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