Bamileke Peoples, Cameroon
H: 24 inches (with cover), 14 inches (without cover),
W: 22 inches, L: 41 inches, Inside Depth: 6 inches
The Bamileke ethnic group, numbering about 750,000, occupies the grassland region in south-west Cameroon. Along the equatorial forest in the south and savanna in the north, the Bamileke, the Bamun and the Tikar peoples are ruled by Kings- with each kingdom creating their own artistic style. Their art works usually convey themes of leadership, royalty, and prestige. They produce large figures, thrones, glass beads, and important royal vessels. These objects are used by the King to assert his power and authority. Prestigeous objects like this intricate and massive royal vessel shown here; carved with high relief around the surface, with motifs of human figures, and four wolf-like figures- two at each end of the vessel, attentively watching, suggests ancestral guardians proctecting its content of ivory, gold, glass beads and other precious jewlery. One should make special note of the perfect symmetry on this beautifully executed carving; the lid with twisted handle, the detail given to this piece speaks volumes regarding its use as a true royal treasure. Simply incredible masterpiece of work! Very fine aged brown patina.