Requires Photography

Beaded Adornment

African, Democratic Republic of the Congo
mid 20th century


Dimensions

Overall: 121.5 cm (47 13/16 in.)

Accession Number

2010.251

Not On View

Collections

Africa and Oceania, Contemporary Art, Jewelry

Classifications

Beads

Beads are symbols of status among the Kuba peoples of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and are associated with wealth and social, political, and spiritual authority. Beaded objects are worn in ceremonial and funerary contexts by title-holding individuals. Possibly a necklace, this adornment is made of tan disks. Historically, cowry shells and beads are imported goods and their use in decorating these objects denotes power and wealth of the wearer as well as the continuity of Kuba traditions.

Provenance

About 1970, acquired in the Democratic Republic of Congo (then Zaire) by Jean and John Stanbury; 2010, gift of Jean and John Stanbury to the MFA. (Accession date: April 14, 2010)

Credit Line

Gift of Jean and John Stanbury