The Collection

The Kota


60cm high
wood, copper

Made with two colour shades of copper. Quite strangely the face displays a rather cheerful mouth, while there seem to be tears under the eyes. Well proportioned statue with lovely features, but slightly dull in colour.

Good condition, just the wooden part of the left “leg” is slightly chipped.


58cm high
wood, copper

Made with two different colour shades of copper. This is actually one of my favourites. When I received it, it was covered with all kinds of grime which didn’t make sense to me. I was unsure whether it was years of sacrificial outpourings of grieve, or just a way to make the statue look older. I decided on the second option and to my delight uncovered a real gem. The eye disks are in ivory.


Kota, Gabon
Height 43cm, Copper and iron

Throwing knife in the shape of a birds head, with the beak used as the sharp end of the blade. 

A well proportioned weapon with the handle in perfect condition, the blade obviously is quite mrusted.


Height 54cm
Wood and two tone copper

Obamba style from northeast Gabon. A strong and powerful piece with lots of intricate detail. Despite the extremely varied and different copper design  treatment on each section, one of the strongest features is the beautifully aged wood grain on the back.


Height 63cm
Wood and two tone copper

This is an unusually tall piece. It hails from  from the village Ndasane in Northern Gabon.

Quite visible and dramatic  wood erosion on back as shown in the image,otherwise in excellent condition. 


Obamba style, Height 52cm
Wood and copper

A very bright and shiny piece. Even the proportions and shape seemto be quite cheerful compared to most Kota pieces. The numerous individual small squares and dots were created as a direct representation of the sun which gives guidance and light to the people. This statue is a real positive statement. Part of the design pattern is repeated on the back in the wood.


Obamba style, 184cm
A life size statue

This obviously didn’t fit into the Mbete basket, but was used as a stand alone guardian figure.

Such a large figure would most probably have been used on special occasions only and belonged to the community instead of an individual or a family as is the case normally. Excellent condition.


Sango style, Height 76cm
wood, copper, bones, vegetable fibres

Small elongated head in typical Sango style. Not many Bwete baskets remain intact. These baskets were kept for generations, but especially during the 1950’s and 1960’s when religious beliefs changed drastically, most baskets were abandoned or destroyed, but fortunately some were kept by their owners and still more can possibly  be found today. Very good condition.


Height 45cm
Wood, copper,iron

The rattle was shaken as a music instrument to warm up and create a positive atmosphere at gatherings before the arrival of the chief. After the chief’s arrival it was filled up with palm wine and handed over to him . He would then share it with his guardians, as a safety measure letting them drink first to ensure they would not betray him and it was safe for him to partake in the occasion. A rare and very beautiful piece. The eyes are made with ivory disks. 


Kota, Bakwele tribe, Height 45cm
Wood and copper

This is a similar goblet to the one described before,  but unfortunately some parts of the statue are missing, especially the left eye and ear.  Many old pieces have been stolen over the years, or were forcefully removed from their position at a shrine, this is possibly what happened here.


Kota, Gabon
Height 50cm

A very unusual piece as the Kota are not really known to produce ceramics. The figures on top and side are definitely pure Kota style, but at the same time seem to be representing the shape of a snake’s head.

Very good condition, but slightly chipped at the base.


Kota, Gabon
Wood, metal, leater, shells, Height 40cm

Bellows were used as part of traditional craftmanship by all the peoples in Gabon, especially the Fang. But this outstanding piece is definitely of Kota origin, with it’s delicate pattern details, metal studs and attention to detail. Over the years the various tribes of Gabon lived in close relationships and influenced by intermarriage were learning and copying each others habits.

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