BEADED SPLENDOR:
Migration of Beadmaking and Beadwork Throughout Africa

Nupe Beadmakers

Bida, Northern Nigeria
Photograph by Eliot Elisofon, 1970
Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art

The beadmaking industry at Bida is famous throughout West Africa. In this picture, which was carefully posed by the photographer, beadmakers melt glass from bottles and other sources in a small, woodburning, clay furnace and work into beads. The triangular openings in the walls of the workshop provide light and let heat escape.

 

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