|Title||Chokwe Headrest Double Congo African Art|
|Type of Object||Carving, Figure, Statue, Sculpture|
|Country of Origin||Democratic Republic of Congo|
|Approximate Age||Mid 20th century|
|Overall Condition||Fair. Most of our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners. Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use. We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings. Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.|
|Damage/Repair||Chips, large cracks, dirt and wear|
Additional Information: The Chokwe share stylistic elements with a number of distinct but related peoples in Angola and the Congo . The most prominent of these peoples are the Chokwe but also includes the Ovimbundu, Lunda, Lwena, Luvala, Minungu, Mbwela, Songo and Imbangala. This is an area that has shared stylistic elements and figural forms based upon common mythologies and ritual practices possibly showing influences of Tabwa or Luba sculptural styles. Figures such as this could be found among a number of these groups and at the same time she may indeed not come from this large constellation of differing peoples but from a neighboring group influenced by them.
Chockwe art is a royal art, devoted primarily to prestige objects produced for the court. The social importance of these arts is demonstrated by the fact that professional carvers are often employed to create them. Chokwe carvers devote an enormous amount of time to smaller, utilitarian objects, again most frequently for use or display by the royal court. Though statues and masks predominate, many Chockwe masterpieces fall into this category. Among them are enormous chairs with figural adornment, finely-carved stools similar in style to those produced by the Luba, and magnificent, globular whistles. Other items include ritual spoons, combs, thumb pianos, and stunning boxes, frequently showing influence from cultures to the north in the DRC.