top of page

Lost Wax Bronze Casting on Igun Street in Benin

Let me begin by saying that taking this trip was very special to me. Like most people that come from an intra-tribal family, I've always just been Yoruba even though my mum is Benin.

I didn’t know much about Benin culture until I started researching last year. So this trip was extra special because I finally felt at home among Benin people. I’m so excited to take you guys on my unforgettable journey around Benin!

First stop in Benin was Igun Street! This is the place where they cast and sell their famous bronzes. Before we get into the casting process, I just give you guys a little history of the Benin Bronzes.

In Benin, bronze casting was invented around the 15th century. At that time, the bronze casters only made bronzes for the palaces. What some people may not know about the Benin Bronzes is that they were made when important events happened at the Benin court. Because there were no cameras back then, the artists would make a piece depicting special events, similar to an artist painting a picture of the Last Supper, for example. The Benin Bronzes aren’t just art but they represent a pictorial part of Benin history.

There were thousands of these rectangular pieces that decorated the Oba’s palace. Which were looted when the British invaded and conquered Benin in 1897. People always talk about the British Museum but there are hundreds of Benin Bronzes in museums around Europe and America. In July 2021, I went to the British Museum for the first time to see some of the famous Bronzes. They were incredible especially considering the fact that some were made over 500 years ago.

After visiting the museum, I knew I had to go back to Benin and see what the bronze casting is like today.

Bronze Casting is a tradition that’s passed down from generation to generation like many practices across Africa. The casters begin learning the work from as early as 11 years old. I was so fortunate to sit down with some casters and have them not only explain the process from start to finish but also show me. I really enjoyed my experience with them, speaking to them about the market for bronzes today and how this has impacted their daily lives. Here are some pictures from the day. You can call also scroll to the end of the post to watch the full video of the bronze casting lost wax process.

In the video, the caster shows uses the lost wax bronze casting process and shows the entire casting process as I narrate the parts for easy comprehension. Through the video, you can see all of the bronze casting supplies needed for the process.

Let me know what you guys think about the video and please subscribe to my youtube channel for more great culture content!

You guys know I always rock Nigerian brands on my trips and I really loved this look from @forstylesake on Instagram 😍



Hi, thanks for stopping by!

I am a writer and illustrator from Lagos, Nigeria.


In 2015, I started a company called IheartLagos with the aim of showcasing Lagos culture in a unique and fun way.


That journey took me down an exciting path, discovering and learning so much about Nigeria.

Let the posts
come to you.

Thanks for submitting!

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
bottom of page