wood, gourd,
snail shells, feathers, mud/clay,
twisted vegetal fibers, reeds

Approximate dimensions:
13.25" H x 6" W x 6" D

Estimated age:
50± years

Total shipping weight:
ca. 6-lbs.

All sales final.

All items carefully packed & shipped after payment received & cleared via PayPal. Unless otherwise specified in the item description, shipping to the U.S. will generally be via USPS Priority Mail, USPS Parcel Post, or UPS. Expedited shipping upgrade is available & optional. Will ship worldwide, with international shipping rates to be determined by buyer's location. Insurance optional/additional. Seller not responsible for any damages incurred during shipping nor for any Customs-related fees for non-U.S. shipments.
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Item offered:

Luba Kabwelulu
Female Figure
with Gourd
(DR Congo)

Galleria Primitiva
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Galleria Primitiva ~ Galleria Moderna
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On offer from our personal collection is this sensitive kabwelulu, consisting of a carved female half-figure atop a gourd/calabash base, from the Luba peoples of the DR Congo. Used in initiation rituals, power items would be placed & stored inside the gourd, & the kabwelulu's power would gradually increase over time.

With fertility a primary concern for the perpetuity of tribal life, the female form is a favorite theme in Luba sculpture. In this beautifully carved piece, the figure strikes a traditional pose of presenting breasts. Her face is characterized by an expression of quiet dignity & composure. Her torso features distinctive scarification patterns, & her neck bears a number of neck-rings. A complex coiffure adds to the overall grace & elegance of the piece. The figure is secured to the gourd with twisted fibers & a mud/clay substance, then stitched around the top of the gourd. Attached to the piece are power items including snail shells & feathers. A special reed-wrapped ring is attached to the bottom of the gourd, permitting the piece to stand upright unassisted.

Overall condition:
very good; minor abrasions; evidence of old insect damage (arrested). Wonderful old patina. A very special piece, infused with deep spirit... Would be an excellent addition to any serious ethnographic collection.