Human Studies Film Archives

Guide to Yoruba Crafts, 1950-1951

Collection ID:
Bascom, William Russell, 1912-1981
No linguistic content; Not applicable
Physical Description:
1 Film reel
11 minutes
color silent; 400 feet

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
Edited film shot in Oyo, Nigeria during field research. This visual record reflects Bascom's approach to the study of African aesthetics, one which integrated an analysis of the social role, status, and function of the artist with his/her individual style, ideas, and technique. Footage records traditional Yoruba craft techniques including pottery making, spinning cotton, dyeing thread and cloth, weaving of ikat cloth on a men's loom, and woodcarving. Also filmed is master Yoruba woodcarver, Duga of Meko, carving and painting a ritual effigy of Shango.
Legacy Keywords: Pottery manufacture of Nigeria ; Spinning of cotton thread Nigeria ; Textiles dyeing of Nigeria ; Weaving laying of warp Nigeria ; Carving woodcarvers Nigeria ; Effigies carving of Shango Nigeria
Please note that the contents of the collection and the language and terminology used reflect the context and culture of the time of its creation. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution or Anthropology Archives, but is available in its original form to facilitate research.

Immediate Source of Acquisition
Received from Berta Bascom in 1989.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Use
Contact the repository for terms of use.
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open for research. Please contact the archives for information on availability of access copies of audiovisual recordings. Original audiovisual material in the Human Studies Film Archives may not be played.
Preferred Citation
Yoruba Crafts, Human Studies Film Archives, Smithsonian Institution

More Information
Local Number
Local Number
HSFA 1989.19.1

Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Africa, West Geographic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Nigeria Geographic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Yoruba (African people) Cultural Context Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Weaving Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ceramics Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Carving (Decorative arts) Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
silent films Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Human Studies Film Archives
Museum Support Center
4210 Silver Hill Road
Suitland 20746