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Dinka Beaded Corset For Men African Art

Regular Price: $1,200.00

Special Price: $850.00

Product #: 76626
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Title Dinka Beaded Corset For Men African
Type of Object Beadwork, garment
People Dinka
Materials Beads, wire, string
Approximate Age Mid 20th century
Dimensions 32 inches H.(polls) x 23 inches W. x 29 inches D.
Overall Condition Good
Damage/Repair General wear

Additional Information: A wonderful Dinka corset!  Dinka Corsets are rare examples of beautiful garments found in the Sudan region. Unfortunately they are becoming rare these days.They are made of thousands of tiny glass beads in various colors. A corset is usually supported by strong wires at the spin. Beadwork is an expression of the creativity and is an important part of adornment traditions of the Dinka. Corsets such as this are to count among the most valuable and costly objects. They are used as symbol of wealth and social status. In other words, they are indicators of gender, age, wealth, and ethnic affiliations. The colors of the beads indicate the age of the wearer. For instance, young Dinka between 15-25 years-old will wear a corset made of red and black beads; the used of pink and purple are appropriated to a man between 25-30 years old. Yellow beads are worn by wearers of over 30 years old. The combination of colors including blue, green, white,black, and red is frequently used. This composition may appear purely aesthetic. Dinka corsets were used by both men and women. Women' Corsets (Alual) are different from those worn men. In most of the cases women' corsets are decorated with cowry shells. They are of a looser, bodice style. When worn, women' corsets appear ample and hang from the neck like a large necklace. But in some rare case, young girls will wear a tight corset with an important projection in the back such as those of the men. This corset will remain on her and will be cut open only at her wedding. Corsets for men (Malual) are worn tight and are characterized by a high projection on the back usually seen as indicator of the wealth of the wearer's family. Dinka young warrior would keep his corset on him and will change it only when he reaches another group age for his colors change.

For more information and examples of Dinka people wearing corsets see Angela Fisher, AFRICA ADORNED, 1984, pp. 48-53

I have examined this piece and agree with the description.

Niangi Batulukisi, Ph.D.