Showcasing the art and ritual of the African and African-diaspora religions


Catalog Number: B001




height: 45.2 cm 
diameter: 22.6 cm


height: 17.8 in 
diameter: 8.9 in


Religion and Denomination: Santería (Cuba, Yoruba)
Country of Origin: China
Materials: Sheet metal
Usage: N/A
Detailed Description of Significance:

This crown is made for the oricha (goddess) Ochún, more specifically, this crown is for Ochún Ibu-Ikolé. This is an avatar of Ochún. An avatar, or camino (Sp. for road or way), is one representation of the oricha with an emphasis on one of his/her powers. Ochún is generally regarded as the oricha of love, sensuality, gold, amber, and honey. In the Cuban Lucumí tradition, her avatar Ochún Ibu-Ikolé is also known as “Ochún the Vulture.”  She is believed to have saved the world by flying the prayers of the dying world up to the Sun. This avatar of Ochún is also closely related to witchcraft another of her symbols is the mortar and pestle. The gold color of the crown designates it as Ochún’s. The vulture on the crown denotes that it belongs specifically to her avatar Ochún Ibu-Ikolé.

The pendants that hang from the crown represent attributes of Ochún Ibu-Ikolé and also describe her divine family connections. For example, the anvil pendant represents the god Oggún (her former husband), the bolt of lightning represents Changó (her current husband), and the face-mask represents Oyá (her co-wife in marriage to Changó).

Finally, Ochún is associated with the number five. This motif is used throughout the crown: the five-pointed stars, the five leaf-shaped supports, and the 25 (5×5) pendants.