press release

The Fundación Marcelino Botín and the Museum for African Art, in collaboration with the Nigerian National Commission for Museums and Monuments, present the exceptional exhibition entitled Dynasty and Divinity: Ife Art in Ancient Nigeria.

The exhibition features 109 extraordinary bronze, terra-cotta, and stone sculptures, dating from the twelve to the fifteenth century, many of which have never been on display outside of Nigeria.

Ife civilization also produced some of the most extraordinary works of art anywhere, distinguished by their striking beauty and unparalleled technical accomplishment.

Until now there has been no broad-based museum exhibition outside of Ife itself focused exclusively on these works. Dynasty and Divinity will address critical issues of cultural identity, political conflict, diplomacy and healing through the art of this early African polity.

Dynasty and Divinity opens at the Fundación Marcelino Botín, Santander (Spain) on the June 16th, 2009, where it will remain open to the public until the 30th of August 2009. The next stop will be Madrid, in Autumn, at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, thanks to assistance from the Spanish Ministry of Culture. At the beginning of 2010 the exhibition will move to London, where it can be seen at the British Museum.

Dynasty and Divinity
Ife Art in Ancient Nigeria
Kurator: Enid Schildkrout