Lot: 28595th Tribal Art Auction
Artistically engraved calabash
D. R. Congo, Pende
|Provenance||Size||Starting price / estimated price|
|Alex Arthur, Brussels, Belgium||H: 10.2 inch||
plus 23 % commission, VAT, transport and insurance
pumpkin, kaolin, fire blackening, wood, labeled "gabuku", "pumbu" and "mwawa" This calabash is published in Léon de Sousberghes most famous work "L' Art Pende" (1958, p. 167, Fig. 1). He reports that it was acquired from the chief of the Kitombe (Kasai Pende). The bottle-shaped vessel was used to pour palm wine into the chief's cup. The inscription with the names of the three masks "gabuku", "pumbu" and "mwawa" had been added later by the Jesuits. Sousberghe (1903-2006), a Belgian Jesuit priest, worked as missionary and ethnologist in the Lower Congo Basin, particularly with the Pende and neighbouring groups. Works by the same artist can be found in the holdings of the Royal Museum for Central Africa Tervuren, Belgium (inventory no. EO.1953.74.3864 and EO.1955.36.1).