African Metal Arts

Peace, Power and Prestige: Metal Arts in Africa

March 17, 2020 - November 30, 2020

Peace, Power and Prestige: Metal Arts in Africa explores the remarkable roles of metal objects in sustaining and enhancing life in African communities, while demonstrating the aesthetic and expressive power of metal arts. For millennia, African metalsmiths have drawn upon the inherent power and beauty of metal to create dazzling and enduring objects uses as body adornments, currencies, emblems of leadership and authority and sacred objects.


The exhibition will include a diverse range of iron, brass, bronze, gold, copper, silver and alloyed works created by artists in Sub-Saharan Africa between the 12th and 21st centuries. The selected objects are from the Harn Museum of Art collection and private collections, most notably the Drs. John and Nicole Dintenfass collection.

The exhibition is accompanied by the catalogue Peace, Power and Prestige: Metal Arts in Africa (Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art / University Press of Florida, March 2020), edited by Harn Curator of African Art, Susan Cooksey.

For further information on individual goldweights in the exhibition, see these gallery notes.


Please see programs here -

Image Credit:

Gan artist, Burkina Faso, Funerary bracelet (bĩgè sĩmba), 19th century, copper alloy, collection of Drs. Nicole and John Dintenfass, Photograph by Vincent Girier Dufournier