Lot 143: South African Doll - Mixed Media
27 October 2016
Louisville, CO, USALive Auction
** A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this lot will benefit The Fowler Museum at UCLA **
South Africa, Ndebele, ca 2005 CE. A female initiation doll hand-crafted from mixed media. The black fabric head is adorned with a multi-colored beaded headdress, red and white beaded eyes, and a white vertical line bifurcating the visage. Gold colored metal bands and multi-colored beads decorate her neck. Her red leather-like skirt is embellished with an elaborately beaded apron. Wrapped around her torso is a yellow felted shawl lined with a black fabric trim that is further adorned with repeated pairs of white beads. Her legs are comprised of contiguous metal rin ornamented with multi-colored beaded anklets and large black fabric coverefeet. The Ndebele are among the smallest tribesof South Africa; however, their handiwork is easily among the most colorful and interesting. Women are the sole practitioners of Ndebele art, which stems from a rich cultural heritage. Traditionally, most of these rural women are illiterate and beadwork is their only means of earning income. Initiation dolls like this example are oftentimes a gift from the mother to daughter after the latter has completed her initiation. Size: 10.75" H (27.3 cm)
Provenance: Ex-Morgan Collection, Santa Monica, CA.
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Condition Report: Overall excellent.