DRC, Congo- Early 20th century - Good condition-Provenance Patric Claes collection.
A fine female Kuba Anthropomorphic Cup , Democratic Republic of the Congo, with handle in the back
Provenance ex-collection Patric Claes, Brussels.
H= 30 cm, 33 cm on the custom made wood stand.. Rich dark-brown wood shiny patina, with underlying oxidized wood. Left foot reglued.
Provenance: Patric Claes collection who bought it from a french collector. Patric Claes is "Conservateur du Musée des Arts Traditionnels et du Folklore" and consultent to the ministry of environment in Congo.
The style of this Prestige Kuba Anthropomorphic Cup figure is from the northern Kuba of the Sankuru River area, and, more specifically, to the Shoowa. The hairstyle is certainly quite typical of the “Kuba” groups in the confluence area of the Kasai and Sankuru Rivers. Emil Torday describes the hairdressing of the ruling hierarchy of the Kuba: “The men shave the whole head, keeping on the top of the skull only a small tuft of hair just large enough to be hidden by the headdress; the temples and forehead are carefully shaved, but the line of implantation of the hair can nevertheless be distinguished and this line is indicated on the dolls and on the carvings...” (Torday 1910: 49, 169).
Could have been used as a cup to drink palm wine, or as mortar to grind magical substances, hemp or tobacco. Because the first palm wine taken from the tree is considered the sweetest and thereafter becomes progressively stronger, the Kuba people compare it to their own society: sweet youth lacks wisdom, wise old age lacks sweetness of character (Torday, 1925).
Cornet (Dapper, 1997) explains that these cups were reserved for the chiefs and notables and participated to the permanent competition for power and prestige.
A collection from various sources, among them a fine lele mask, a complete Kuba costume, and more .. See images
This statue from David Norden's collection is sold with a written description of the tribe and David Norden private opinion .
May be viewed or picked up in David Norden's Buy African Antiques Shop in Antwerp.
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Please note: seller guarantees this statue authenticity.
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You can pick up this lot from the seller: Antwerpen (Vlaanderen), Belgium.
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