The University of Iowa University of Iowa

Weaving in Southern Nigeria

by Lisa Aronson
Skidmore College

Masked dancer from the Ibani Ijo area. Ijo artist, Nigeria. Photo by Lisa Aronson.


Ijebu cloths are not the only foreign cloths familiar to the Eastern Ijo. Today, descendants of Eastern Ijo trading families own numerous heirloom chests brimming with textiles of African, European, and East Asian origins that their ancestors had acquired through trade with other Africans and Europeans. A fascinating dimension of this historical phenomena is the ways in which the Eastern Ijo have come to incorporate these cloths into their rich ceremonial life and even transform them where appropriate.