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Five Fly Whisks with Carved Handles. Aitutu

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    New York (photographed)

  • Date:

    1935 (photographed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Evans, Walker, born 1903 - died 1975 (photographer)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case X, shelf 202, box I

Physical description

Photograph of five fly whisks with different carved handles including a duck and a fist, with a whip of hair attached, from an exhibition of African art

Place of Origin

New York (photographed)


1935 (photographed)


Evans, Walker, born 1903 - died 1975 (photographer)

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

X.202 / NEW YORK: Museum of Modern Art. / Exhibition of African Negro Art, 1935. / [Photo. No. 139]
Label on mount

139 Five fly whisks with carved handles (Catalog nos. 146-150) / Ivory Coast. Baule. Aitutu / Handles: gold leaf over wood, 6 1/2 to 8 1/2 inches long / Collection Forschungsinstitut für Kulturmorphologie, Frankfort-on-Main, and Dr. Hans Himmelheber, Karlsruhe
Label on mount


Height: 230 mm photograph, Width: 176 mm photograph

Object history note

NB: The term "negro" was used historically to describe people of black (sub-Saharan) African heritage but, since the 1960s, has fallen from usage and, increasingly, is considered offensive. The term is repeated here in its original historical context.

The Museum of Modern Art, New York, commissioned Walker Evans to photograph its African Negro Art exhibition of 1935. He produced 477 images and 17 sets of these images were printed, one of which the V&A bought for $50.
Displayed in "V and A Africa: Exploring Hidden Histories"
15th November 2012- 3rd February 2013

Descriptive line

Photograph by Walker Evans depicting five fly whisks, gold leaf over wood, from an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art entitled 'African Negro Art'. New York, 1935.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)


Photographs by Walker Evans

List of Photographs

The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1935
African Negro Art Edited by James Johnson Sweeney, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1935



Subjects depicted

Whisks; Carved; Tools; Sculpture


Africa; Photographs


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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