Object of the day: a talking drum of the Yoruba

Image courtesy of Dorotheum.

Image courtesy of Dorotheum.

An object you don’t often come across at auction, a talking drum from the Yoruba. The above example was acquired in the palace of the Oba of Oyo in the early 1960s and will be sold by Dorotheum next month; more info here.

Yoruba drum player. Published in: Rivallain (J.) & Iroko (F. A.), Yoruba: masques et rituels africains, Paris, 2000: p. 91.

Yoruba drum player. Published in: Rivallain (J.) & Iroko (F. A.), Yoruba: masques et rituels africains, Paris, 2000: p. 91.

In case you were wondering how they sound… (trust me, you’ll be amazed by the sound they can produce)

Yoruba agere ifa featuring a drum player. Height: 18,5 cm. Collected by Leo Frobenius in 1912. Image courtesy of the Ethnologisches Museum (SMPK), Berlin, Germany (III C 27097).

Yoruba agere ifa featuring a drum player. Height: 18,5 cm. Collected by Leo Frobenius in 1912.
Image courtesy of the Ethnologisches Museum (SMPK), Berlin, Germany (III C 27097).