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  • mcnev77
    Hi Group, I have been traveling since shortly after the group was founded in March. I have settled for awhile back in the States for the first time in six
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 7, 2005
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      Hi Group,
      I have been traveling since shortly after the group was founded in
      March.
      I have settled for awhile back in the States for the first time in
      six years.
      I thought the group might like to see some rare pieces from East
      Africa...I say rare because, unlike Weatern African art, E.African
      art is not published or nearly to the same degree.
      Here is what I have posted:
      1. Kikuyu healer/medicine man mortor and pestles...collected from
      the foothills below Mt. Kenya. These are the only two have ever
      seen. Each belonged to men aged over 80 years and were pasted to
      them by their predecessors. Through a translator I have the history
      of these beauties first hand. The small one is carved out of a
      solid block of ivory, the larger is hollow naturally. The larger
      one has a "spoon" w/ wildebeast tail...hard to see in the photo.
      The spoon is meant to slide through the space in the lower front of
      the jaw where the two front teeth have been removed...this tooth
      extraction is no longer practised by the Kikuyu. The Kikuyu ethnic
      group, from which Kenya's first President, Jomo Kenyatta, hails, is
      the largest and has held the most political power in Kenya since
      independence.
      2. Dinka ivory headrest that I collected in Southern Sudan. It
      belonged to a revered Uncle of John Garang, leader of the SPLA
      insurgents and the first Vice President in the new peace...he
      recently died in a plane crash. Collected in 1998.
      3. Masaii "pillow" ivory headrest. Note the hole where a rungu
      once fit...sadly, that was lost long ago by the time this was
      aquired.
      4. Giryama kigango post. I collected this on the Kenyan coast.
      According to it's owners, it was erected in the early 1960s to honor
      an important relative who had died much earlier. It took five
      yeaars of searching for a family willing to sell one...this family
      felt it was time, they said, because nobody could remember the name
      or deeds of the man honored in the carving.
      5. Kikuyu sword and knife. Again, collected in a village at the
      foot of Mt Kenya. It belonged to a member and fighter against the
      British in the Mau Mau revolution. The man's 90(?) year old wife
      sold it to me. The set has matching ivory handles and the blades
      are forged from the "iron sands", the secret locations where
      blacksmith obtained the iron-rich sands to smelt into lades...the B
      ritish never did find the majority of these still unkwown locations.
      6. Toposa/Didinga power walking stick. This stick is a two tribe
      deal...the ivory ball is a Toposa "dowry" thumb-ball used by that
      tribe to seal marraige deals...it has at one point, most likely by
      raiding exploits, been adapted onto a a stick by the Didinga tribe.
      7. Various dinka bracelets aquired over many trips to Sudan.

      Please have a look and let me know if anyone has seen items like
      these before in musuems or published, excepting the bracelets and
      kigango post of course.

      David
    • Veronique Martelliere
      Hi David Only a very tiny small information : you can find the illustration of a Dinka headrest in AFRICA : the Art of a Continent - page 136. Same book, p
      Message 2 of 2 , Oct 7, 2005
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        Hi David
         
        Only a very tiny small information : you can find the illustration of a Dinka headrest in "AFRICA : the Art of a Continent" - page 136.
        Same book, p 145 : Gyriama posts.
         
        That's all what I found until now.
        Cheers,
        Vero

        mcnev77 <mcnevindt@...> wrote:
        Hi Group,
          I have been traveling since shortly after the group was founded in
        March. 
          I have settled for awhile back in the States for the first time in
        six years.
           I thought the group might like to see some rare pieces from East
        Africa...I say rare because, unlike Weatern African art, E.African
        art is not published or nearly to the same degree. 
          Here is what I have posted:
        1.  Kikuyu healer/medicine man mortor and pestles...collected from
        the foothills below Mt. Kenya.  These are the only two have ever
        seen.  Each belonged to men aged over 80 years and were pasted to
        them by their predecessors.  Through a translator I have the history
        of these beauties first hand.  The small one is carved out of a
        solid block of ivory, the larger is hollow naturally.  The larger
        one has a "spoon" w/ wildebeast tail...hard to see in the photo. 
        The spoon is meant to slide through the space in the lower front of
        the jaw where the two front teeth have been removed...this tooth
        extraction is no longer practised by the Kikuyu.  The Kikuyu ethnic
        group, from which Kenya's first President, Jomo Kenyatta, hails, is
        the largest and has held the most political power in Kenya since
        independence.
        2. Dinka ivory headrest that I collected in Southern Sudan.  It
        belonged to a revered Uncle of John Garang, leader of the SPLA
        insurgents and the first Vice President in the new peace...he
        recently died in a plane crash.  Collected in 1998.
        3.  Masaii "pillow" ivory headrest.  Note the hole where a rungu
        once fit...sadly, that was lost long ago by the time this was
        aquired.
        4. Giryama kigango post.  I collected this on the Kenyan coast. 
        According to it's owners, it was erected in the early 1960s to honor
        an important relative who had died much earlier.  It took five
        yeaars of searching for a family willing to sell one...this family
        felt it was time, they said, because nobody could remember the name
        or deeds of the man honored in the carving.
        5.  Kikuyu sword and knife.  Again, collected in a village at the
        foot of Mt Kenya.  It belonged to a member and fighter against the
        British in the Mau Mau revolution.  The man's 90(?) year old wife
        sold it to me.  The set has matching ivory handles and the blades
        are forged from the "iron sands", the secret locations where
        blacksmith obtained the iron-rich sands to smelt into lades...the B
        ritish never did find the majority of these still unkwown locations.
        6. Toposa/Didinga power walking stick.  This stick is a two tribe
        deal...the ivory ball is a Toposa "dowry" thumb-ball used by that
        tribe to seal marraige deals...it has at one point, most likely by
        raiding exploits, been adapted onto a a stick by the Didinga tribe.
        7. Various dinka bracelets aquired over many trips to Sudan.

          Please have a look and let me know if anyone has seen items like
        these before in musuems or published, excepting the bracelets and
        kigango post of course.

        David






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