Zande/Mangbetu Ceramic, Congo.
H: 50 (19,7″), Ø: 36 (14,2″)
This clay vessel decorated with a female bust comes from the Azande/Zande people or the Mangbetu who lived in the Northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo in the region of savanna and forest. Pots like this were either made for daily use for water, wine and food or in special ceremonies as a container for offerings. Elaborate figurative jars were often used as a prestigious object rather than an everyday implement.
Literature: The Tribal Arts of Africa. Jean-Baptiste Bacquart, Thames and Hudson, 1998.
Evan Maurer & Niangi Batulukisi, Spirits Embodied Art of the Congo, 1999, pp. 140-145.