The Textiles of Africa
The Textiles of Africa are known for their strong graphic qualities.
TAI Gallery/Textile Arts maintains a rich and varied inventory of antique textiles from the Kuba peoples. It is hard not to be fascinated by the ingenuity of the Kuba textiles. The prestige panels with complex patterning are based on the rigid grid of the ground textile. These are contrasted with the rhythm and movement of the appliqué panels that compose the Kuba dance skirts. Both reflect the orderly stratified structure of the Kuba society. There is a framework in which people live in much the same way as there is a visible, overall structure to the Kuba compositions. Over this lies a superficial chaos which reflects life's complexities.
Prices for prestige cloths range from $1000- $5000; For long dance skirts,
$2000 - $15,000; and individual panels for skirts $800 - $3000.
The bark paintings of the M'buti Pygmy reach back to primordial times. They
speak clearly of human expression, of a time of wonderment, or a moment in
life. The Pygmy woman painted sitting on the ground holding the bark in her
lap. Her tools were simple: a twig or even a finger was dipped into a pot
of black dye made from the juice of the gardenia seed, and soot from the fire.
Prices for Pygmy drawings, called Pongo range from $800 - $3000.
Warrior flags of Asafo Frankaa are part of the traditions of the Asafo
people of Ghana. The designs are sometimes drawn from proverbs but also
include a wide range of boasts, insults, riddles, and jokes.
Prices of Asafo Frankaa range from $1500 - $4000.
Garments of the Dida people, both tubular loincloths and rectangular shaped
shawls reveal an extraordinary sense of texture and form. This is achieved
by plaiting and then tie-dyeing with mineral dyes the long strands of the
Prices for Dida garments range from $2500 - $5000.