Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Seattle Art Museum (SAM)

Male standing figure

Photo: Elizabeth Mann

Male standing figure

20th century

Lean and angular, this male figure was probably once costumed and carried into the artistic tornado of dance and singing duels that Nyamwezi leaders oversee. Wood sculptures were part of a full range of special effects employed to steal attention from the crowds—performers might swallow flames, bury themselves alive or set off smoke attacks. As this man’s face calmly wards off all intrusions, he undoubtedly witnessed many tricky maneuvers in this dazzling realm of creative competition.

Wood, natural pigments, cloth
Height: 26in. (66cm)
Gift of Dr. Oliver E. and Pamela F. Cobb, in honor of Mark Groudine
Photo: Elizabeth Mann
Not currently on view

Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are on the traditional homelands of the Duwamish and the customary territories of the Suquamish and Muckleshoot Peoples. As a cultural and educational institution, we honor our ongoing connection to these communities past, present, and future. We also acknowledge the urban Native peoples from many Nations who call Seattle their home.

Learn more about Equity at SAM