c. 1920

Wood and tukula

Overall: 10.8 cm (4 1/4 in.)

Gift of Katherine C. White 1976.185



Over the centuries the Kuba developed a distinctive and elaborate decorative style to embellish a wide variety of personal and household objects. Each design, derived from weaving patterns, has its own name---for example the interlace is called imbol. This box held tukula, a fragrant red camwood powder that was mixed with palm oil and used as a cosmetic. The carved pattern around the sides is called bisha masongo, the "back of the wild boar."

See also
African Art
African Art
Type of artwork: 

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