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African Art

Harp with a Female Head

late 19th–early 20th century

Wood, hide, and metal

19 1/2 × 5 11/16 × 4 5/16 in. (49.5 × 14.5 × 11 cm)
Charles B. Benenson, B.A. 1933, Collection
2006.51.351
Geography: 
Made in Guinea Coast, Sierra Leone
Made in Liberia
Status: 
On view*
Culture: 
Mende
Period: 
19th–20th century
Classification: 
Musical Instruments
Provenance: 

William Downing Webster, England to March 4, 1898 or George Fabian Lawrence, England to March 4, 1898; Lt.-Gen. Augustus Henry Lane-Fox Pitt-Rivers, Farnam, Dorset, England, from March 4, 1898. Possibly sold at Sotheby's London on November 15, 1965. Charles B. Benenson Collection, donated to Yale University Art Gallery in 2004

Bibliography: 

Susan Vogel, African Sculpture: The Shape of Surprise, exh. cat. (Greenvale, N.Y.: C. W. Post Gallery, 1980), no. 120.

Warren M. Robbins and Nancy Ingram Nooter, African Art in American Collections (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1989), 558, fig. 1534.

Marie-Thérèse Brincard, Sounding Forms: African Musical Instruments (New York: American Federation of Arts, 1989), fig. 12.

“Acquisitions, July 1, 2005–June 30, 2006,” Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin (2006): 222.

Frederick John Lamp, Amanda Maples, and Laura M. Smalligan, Accumulating Histories: African Art from the Charles B. Benenson Collection at the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2012), 229, ill.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.