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Gelede Headdress

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Gelede masquerades celebrate the special powers of female spirits known as, "the mothers". The mothers possess a powerful life force (ase), which can be used for benevolent of malevolent purposes. The destructive capacity of "the mothers" is called "aje" and is associated with infertility,...

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Inscription

illegible written inscription underside of base with two words and a #2.

Provenance

By 1970s, Paris, France; 1970s, to Geneviève McMillan, Cambridge, MA; gift of McMillan to MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart

African, Yoruba peoples, Republic of Benin, 20th century, 1950–2000

Object Place

Republic of Benin

Dimensions

Overall: 16.5 x 20 x 27.5 cm (6 1/2 x 7 7/8 x 10 13/16 in.) Lender Accessory (Hinel base): 42.3 cm (16 5/8 in.)

Accession Number

2009.2720

Medium or Technique

Wood and pigment

Collections

Africa and Oceania

Classifications

Sculpture