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Explore Terracotta Fragments, Nok Terracotta, and more!

In contrast to the magnificent sculptures, which can be viewed in the catalogs , we find only fragments of which are heavily weathered and always broken. Actually just in one case the fragments fitted together to one complete figure. Beside this exception all figures are fragmented so that an intentional destruction is assumed. What features they had , remains speculative. Regarding this the context of the figures plays an important role!

Male Figure - The highly skilled Nok artisans created images of great power, beauty, and sophistication. This ...represents the fully developed Nok style, characterized here by the expressively modeled head with finely detailed features...and carefully defined costume. The complex hairstyle, characteristic of Nok pieces, is composed of three rows of seven conical buns, with larger hemispherical caps over the ears. The importance of jewelry in Nok culture is illustrated by...

The earliest known figurative sculpture from sub-Saharan Africa was made by the Nok People of Eastern Nigeria starting around 500 BCE. The figures are large and many were complete figures in standing, sitting or genuflecting positions. A salient feature is the head which s proportionately larger than the body. Seated Dignitary, ca. 250 BCE. Fired Clay; H. 36 1/4 x W. 10 7/8 x D.14 in. The Minneapolis Institute of Arts