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ID number:  BIRRC-NS0001
Institution:  Research and Cultural Collections
Named collection:  Nicklin Salmons Collection
Title / Object name:  Abakua Figurine
Object type:  Figurine
Culture:  Cuba
Date made:  2013
Materials:  Wood, raffia string, cotton textile, metal bells,
BIRRC-NS0001.JPG

Standing figurine on a wooden base. Wearing black checked material with white ribbon. Hat with wide red brim. Raffia tassles. Belt with metal bells.

Notes:  Abakua masquerade model, collected in 2014 in Havana. Ref. I. J. Miller (2009). The members of the Cuban Abakua secret society are the descendants of slaves taken from the Cross River region of Nigeria who took with them ideas relating to the Ekpe society and reconstructed shrines and traditional signs and symbols both in dance and on art on walls and floors and have continued such practices to the present day. Miller has now arranged for Havana Abakua members to meet with Ekpe members in Calabar - the two groups were unaware of each other's existence until Miller made them aware at a lecture when he, having never been initiated into the Ekpe, began reciting one of their secret chants.JRS

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