Throne of King Nsa'ngu Description
While going through Art Beyond The West, I had came across a very interesting figure that was in the African section. After I had read through more of the description of this wonderful piece, I soon found out that this piece is a sculpture of the king's throne. This wonderful African piece is made out of wood, different kinds of glass beads, and cowrie shells. This sculpture is almost a full 6 feet tall. The artist for this piece is still unknown to this day. There are two figures at the top of this piece, one has a flute or horn of some sort in his hands, the other figure has a offering bowl in their hands as if they are offering something to their king.There are snake like figures right underneath the top two figures that almost seem as if they represent a binder of some sort. They represent how close the people are with their king. There are two more figures that are close to the bottom, that seem like they have a weapon of some sort in their hands as if they are guarding the kings throne. At the very bottom of this piece, there are five different figures, they appear to be everyday people of the king, they seem to be holding up the kings throne, as if they are the life of the king.
Throne of King Nsa'ngu
The artist used some very light toned blues on the red-faced figures clothing. The other figure at the top has more of a very-saturated blue for their clothing. The artist most likely has them with different colors to tell the difference of the two. The other seven figures that are on this piece are painted with a very dull green. The snake-like figures on this piece are painted with the same two blues that the top two figures are painted with. There are many geometric shapes throughout this piece. For example, the top two figures have many triangles within their clothing and their headdress. The other two figures below the top two figures have these zig-zag patterns along their sleeves and more of the triangle patterns. The objects they seem to be holding in their hands have these checkered pattern in them. The box the two are standing on seems like it is made out of very dull tan beads. The five figures at the bottom all have many geometric patterns, such as the triangle pattern and the zig-zag pattern. This piece would be set up outside of his palace so he would be able to sit during events.
Refrence: Kampen O'Riley, Michael. "In Africa." In Art Beyond the West, 260-261. 2nd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ:Pearson Prentice Hall, 2006.
7.24 Throne of King Nsa'ngu. Cameroon, Bamum. Late 19th century. Wood, glass beads, and cowrie shells; height 68 1/2'' (1.74m). Museum fur Volkerkunde, Berlin. Staatliche Museen zu Berlin.