A particularly interesting characteristic of this piece is the use of rare pink glass beads to string together tiny nineteenth-century white heart beads. Worn by a married Kikuyu woman, this early beaded head adornment would have served as a striking visual symbol of wealth and prestige.
The composition is unusual for traditional African head adornments. When placed over the woman’s head, the large, intricately beaded spiral ornaments would have hung on either side of her temples. This piece makes a statement about the value and importance of beadwork throughout the Rift Valley region of East Africa.
Ex Private Collection, UK
H (Excl. Stand): 9cm