Lot: 361

Seated male dignitary

D. R. Congo, Western Congo, Yombe, "Master of the Double Lips"

Provenance Size Hammer price
Rob Vervoort, Molenstede-Diest, Belgium H: 7.7 inch 4000 EUR

wood, black paint, two smaller missing parts (headgear)

This beautiful sculpture was carved in precious "golden wood" which was reserved for sculptures representing important people.

The figure can be attributed to an artist known as the "Master of the Double Lips" who, according to M. L. Felix, was active in the last quarter of the 19th century.

His figures show strikingly full lips, with a particularly beautifully curved upper lip also highlighted by a fine raised edge. Hence the term "Master of the Double Lips" is derived.

Other characteristics point to this master, such as the oversized heads with beautifully modeled rounded facial features, in which the high cheekbones are particularly emphasized; but also the treatment of the elongated, narrow eyes, the lids of which are framed by fine raised edges, the relatively short noses or the ritually filed incisors.

Figures of the "Master of the Double Lips" published by Felix, "Kongo Kingdom Art", Hong Kong, 2003, p. 123, Cat.3,1a & b (AHDRC 0017862 & 0018037). Other works in AHDRC (0017928, 0017936 etc.).


Felix, Marc Leo, Ritual Figures in Congo, Hong Kong 2018, Cat.112 Felix, Marc L. (ed.), Kongo Kingdom Art, Hong Kong 2003, p. 123, Cat. 3,1a & b