Osun-Osogbo World Heritage Site

Sacred forest along the bank of Osun river in Osogbo

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Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Templo Osun3.jpg
LocationOsogbo, Nigeria
CriteriaCultural: (ii), (iii), (vi)
Reference1118
Inscription2005 (29th session)
Area75 ha (190 acres)
Buffer zone47 ha (120 acres)
Coordinates7°45′20″N 4°33′08″E / 7.75556°N 4.55222°E / 7.75556; 4.55222Coordinates: 7°45′20″N 4°33′08″E / 7.75556°N 4.55222°E / 7.75556; 4.55222
Osun-Osogbo is located in Nigeria
Osun-Osogbo
Location of Osun-Osogbo in Nigeria
River-SideShrineAndSacredGroveOfOsun.jpg

Osun-Osogbo or Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove is a sacred forest along the banks of the Osun river just outside the city of Osogbo, Osun State, Nigeria.

The Osun-Osogbo Grove is among the last of the sacred forests which usually adjoined the edges of most Yoruba cities before extensive urbanization. In recognition of its global significance and its cultural value, the Sacred Grove was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.[1]

The 1950s saw the desecration of the Osun-Osogbo Grove: shrines were neglected, priests abandoned the grove as customary responsibilities and sanctions weakened. Prohibited actions like fishing, hunting and felling of trees in the grove took place until an Austrian, Susanne Wenger, came and stopped the abuse going on in the grove.[2]

With the encouragement of the Ataoja and the support of the local people, "Wenger formed the New Sacred Art movement to challenge land speculators, repel poachers, protect shrines and begin the long process of bringing the sacred place back to life by establishing it, again, as the sacred heart of Osogbo".[3]

  1. ^ Peter Probst. Osogbo and the Art of Heritage. Monuments. Deities, and Money. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2011.
  2. ^ Peter Probst. "Modernism against Modernity. A Tribute to Susanne Wenger." Critical Interventions, Journal of African Art History and Visual Culture, 2009, No.3/4, 245-255. Peter Probst. "From Iconoclasm to Heritage. The Osogbo Art Movement and the Dynamics of Modernism in Nigeria." A Companion to Modern African Art. Edited by Gitti Salami and Monica Blackmun Visona (eds.) Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013, pp. 294-310.
  3. ^ "Osun Osogbo: Carnival of culture in a sacred forest". The Punch - Nigeria's Most Widely Read Newspaper. Archived from the original on 3 June 2015. Retrieved 18 August 2015.

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