A female head with a prominent ridged coiffure surmounts this fine high-backed Luguru throne. Her arched hairstyle is adorned with a series of punctuated decorations, and a configuration of three diamond shaped structures join together the chair’s curved legs.
The back of the throne features a series of contrasting panels, consisting of engraved zigzag and linear designs, and, over time, the surface of the chair has developed a well-worn patina. In Tanzania, elaborate high-backed stools generally signify the governing authority of their owners, effectively becoming thrones used in official ceremonies.
A very similar example – possibly from the same hand – can be found in the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. This Tanzanian throne was collected in Lake Tanganyika by a Belgian military officer in 1919. A link to the Smithsonian chair is provided below.
'High-Back Stool', Smithsonian: National Museum of African Art
Ex Private Collection, UK
Estimated Period: First Half of 20th Century
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