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    Artist Name:

    Mangbetu Artist

    Nationality & Life Dates:

    Democratic Republic of the Congo




    ca. 1910




    12 1/2 × 6 × 6 inches

    Credit Line:

    Purchase in honor of Debbie Wagner, President of the Members Guild, 2002–2003

    Accession Number:


    On View - Anne Cox Chambers Wing, Second Level, Gallery 214
    This intricately detailed anthropomorphic vessel was made as a prestigious gift. Its elegant form depicts the aristocratic hairstyle worn by royal men and women of the Mangbetu kingdom in central Africa at the turn of the century. By the early 1920s the Belgian Queen Elizabeth visited central Africa and photographed a woman of the Mangbetu court; her portrait was then circulated on the Belgian stamp and images of royal Mangbetu women proliferated throughout the 1920s and 1930s. The image became an important icon for Harlem Renaissance artists, inspiring Aaron Douglas’s cover image for Opportunity magazine and many other works.

    Reproduction of digital images, including downloading, is governed by copyright laws and international conventions. Please contact the Images and Rights Coordinator for information concerning permissions or to request digital photography of works in the High's collection.

    Please Note: Not all permanent collection works are currently on view. Please contact the Museum concerning the on view status for a specific work if required.

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