Wood | h 220 cm | 86,6 in. | 20th century


An amazing palace door carved by the famous Yoruba master carver Olowe of Ise who lived from 1875-1938.
Olowe of Ise was born in Efo-Alaiye, a major artistic centre in Yorubaland. He spent most of his life in Ise where he was engaged as a messenger at the court of the Arinjale (king) of Ise.
If Olowe had a master whom he learned from is unclear. His fame spread throughout eastern Yorubaland. The wealthy and rulers of Ilesa. Ikere, Akure, Idanre, Ogbagi and other towns located within a 60 mile radius of Ise summoned Olowe to carve doors, veranda posts and personal and ritual objects for them.
His art and name went overseas in 1924 when a door and lintel ensemble he carved for the royal palace at Ikere was selected for the Nigerian Pavilion at the British Emoire Exhibition at Wembley, London.
Today, Olowe of Ise is considered as the most important Yoruba artist of the 20th century by western art historians, collectors and also by his own people.