Indiana University Bloomington IU Bloomington IUB

Female Figure

Though simply carved and modest in size, this figure is monumental in its presence. The raised head, tautly arched back, and sharply angled arms create tension and energy that is accentuated by the reddish-orange pigment covering the surface. Widely published, this sculpture is recognized as the most compelling Montol figure known in the West. Roy Sieber, who taught African art history at Indiana University for nearly forty years, and who was instrumental in assembling the Eskenazi Museum of Art’s collections of African, South Pacific, and Pre-Columbian art, acquired this figure in Lalin, a small Montol village, during a research trip to northern Nigeria in 1958.

Montol peoples, Nigeria
Female Figure
ca. 1950
Wood, pigment
H. 15 in. (38.1 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Gift of the Raymond and Laura Wielgus Collection in memory of Roy Sieber, 2005.13