|Collection||African Art Collection|
|Other Name||African Utility Stool|
Utility Stool. Nigeria, West Africa. Has 4 rectangular legs supporting an upwardly bent board/seat. Flanked by a turtle's head. Encrusted wood with worn patina.
Ceremonial stools are commonly used in different West African countries such as Ghana and Nigeria. These stools are the prerogative of kings and other ranking persons. Some are handed down from one chief to another or a new stool is made when a new chief assumes office. At meetings or gatherings, the chief sits on his stool to display his power and authority to the crowd. In some African cultures, the stool is the most important item of a chief's regalia/ They are often adorned with gold or silver strips, belts, and/or beads. To commemorate the death of a chief, some African cultures "smoke" or "blacken" the stool.