Chief Eduwu Ekhator Obasogie, the Obasogie of Benin Kingdom, traveled from Nigeria to see IYARE! He stands here with the Edo college students who so ably brought the Kingdom's dance to a new audience, and gave them a little taste of home.
Chief is wearing attire developed by Dr. Aisien that shows loyalty to the monarch, Oba Erediauwa. In past centuries, all citizens had iwu torso tattoos.
While this fell by the wayside earlier in the 20th century, Dr. Aisien--with palace support--created outfits that included embroidered versions of the old tattoos. Courtiers and cultural troupes demonstrate their unwavering fidelity to the king when they wear this dress.
Oba gha to kpere! Isee!
Photo by Jennifer Chiappardi