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Classification: Sculpture

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Image of Puppet

Ogoni or Anang Ibibio Peoples


20th century

39 3/4 x 7 x 6 in. (100.97 x 17.78 x 15.24 cm)
Medium and Support: Wood and pigment
Accession Number: 2015.0014.0002

Credit Line: Gift of Dileep and Martha Mehta

The Ogoni traditionally used puppetry for amusement and social control at ceremonial events like initiations, weddings, and funerals. The ekong society and its companion drama association created plays and songs that satirized individuals who had earned the community’s disapproval, and others about contemporary life. A puppet stage of bamboo poles covered with palm branches and textiles covered several men who held their puppets aloft on long poles and operated them with rods and strings. This puppet may represent a drunkard, who has drinking vessels in both hands.

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