Collections: Africa

Although the Hearst Museum now has about 16,800 artifacts from Africa, the Museum had very little from the continent until the directorship of pioneering Africanist William Bascom (1957–79). The ethnographic holdings are particularly rich in documented collections from Nigeria and other areas of West and Central Africa, and include wood sculpture, basketry and pottery, musical instruments, brass castings and other metalwork, and textiles. The largest single cultural collection comes from the Yoruba of Nigeria—numbering about 1,300 items—making it one of the largest and most comprehensive in North America.

 

Hearst Museum Collections Portal

The Hearst Museum's new Collections Portal is now online with information for every object in our collections and over 323,000 photos.

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