yoruba offering 2

Yoruba figural offering bowl – "Opon Igede Ifa" or "Olumeye"

Yoruba figural offering bowl – “Opon Igede Ifa” or “Olumeye” NFT

This NFT is inspired by the actual physical piece Yoruba figural offering bowl is in the possession of NFT artist. The physical piece of art is also available for sale with the NFT.

Traditionally, bowls such as these were used to hold kola nuts (obi) as offerings of hospitality, which were given to visitors as a gesture of welcome, and friendship. Often the guest and others present would chew kola while conversing.

The kneeling position is a gesture of respect, devotion, and submission. “Olumeye” means “one who knows respect”. In Ifa divination rituals, the bird symbolizes honor and prosperity; when offered as sacrifice. The containers in these objects were often in the form of a chicken (adie) with the lower half of the bowl containing the feet and the upper part of the bowl (missing in this example) containing the head and wings.

Hair in Yoruba art and culture is a fascinating topic all on it’s own. “In general, a woman’s hair may reflect her state of mind or important phases in her life, such as the naming ceremony of a new child, chieftaincy installations, marriage, and the various festivals in honor of the orisa. In the past, a widow was required to undo her braids, leave her hair disheveled, and remain indoors until the completion of her husband’s funeral rites, which may last about three months. At the end of the mourning period, her head would be shaved clean to mark a symbolic separation from her deceased husband and a return to normal life (Daramola and Jeje 1975:153. Although Yoruba burial customs vary from area to area, in most cases the head of the corpse, male or female, was shaved clean before burial.” (Hair in African Art and Culture pg 98). reference: https://www.randafricanart.com/Yoruba_offering_bowl.html

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