About this artwork
Often highly inventive in their forms, small bottles are made by potters throughout Central Africa for holding liquids such as beer, oil, water, or palm wine. Such pieces are often treasured personal possessions and are therefore appropriate for use in honoring ancestors, whether through the pouring of libations on special occasions or by placing them on shrines or graves. With its organic, gourdlike shape, this vessel may have been fashioned by a Chokwe potter in Angola or may be Ambundu, from the Kongo-speaking region further north. The maker’s steady and confident hand rendered tightly etched bands of pattern around the bottle’s neck and charming depictions of animals, including an antelope and a bird, around the shoulder.
—Revised from Kathleen Bickford Berzock, For Hearth and Altar, African Ceramics from the Keith Achepohl Collection (2005), pp. 159-160.
Currently Off View
- Arts of Africa
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- 21 × 17.8 cm (8 1/4 × 7 in.)
- Gift of Keith Achepohl