7180

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    Unusual Zulu Wirework Gourd Rattle

    Zulu People, Southern Africa
    early 20th century

    width of gourd: 8cm, length (including handle): 29cm, weight: 60g

    Available - Enquire

    Provenance

    UK art market

    – scroll down to see further images –

    This gourd, with a wonderful deep patina, has a long, turned wooden handle attached, and has been made into a rattle. (There is something loose inside the gourd which rattles as it is shaken).

    The gourd has been decorated with brass and copper wire in various crescent and other geometric motifs – the wire has been ‘sewn’ into the surface of the gourd.

    Such brass and copper wire work is more usually seen on Zulu gourd snuff bottles.

    The wire used to decorate gourd containers and knobkierrie clubs often was sourced by pillaging telegraph cables during early colonial days much to the annoyance of the colonial authorities!

    The rattle here is in fine condition and has obvious age. There are no losses to the wirework.

     

    References

    Petridis, C., The Art of Daily Life: Portable Objects from Southeast Africa, 5 Continents, 2011.

    Zaloumis, A., Zulu Tribal Art, Amazulu, 2000.

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