Focus of the month – January 2013 ‘Collecting tribal hats’

By admin | January, 5, 2013 | 0 comments

Collecting Tribal hats Hats have played an very important role in African traditional and social life since the 1800′s.Always with a great sense of colour and design the variety in African traditional hats is unlimited.They always formed an important role in ceremonies as symbols of prestige and importance.A man’s hat was his personal signature,a part of his living being and presence.One look at his hat could tell his wealth,his rank in society.It was as much about who he was as anything he possessed in daily life.Because of this, hats were a crowning achievement,a symbol of status  and not something that was worn for good looks alone. Over the years I have always been interested in collecting old, rare  (and not so rare)African tribal hats as well as  other forms of personal adornment.In nearly every society in Africa hats were worn in some form or another.Building a collection of hats for display is always rewarding as they bring another colourful dimension to African art.I have now in the gallery a collection of over a dozen hats from all over African,some are featured below.

Above – Beaded crown.Yoruba.Mid 20th century.
Above  - Brass warrior’s hat with ostrich feather decoration.Lotuxo – Southern Sudan.1930′s

Above: Fine quality woven fibre hat. Early to mid 20th century.Cameroon.


Above – A brass helmet similar to the one pictured above photographer in 1933 Souther Sudan.

Above – A decorated clay and hair elders hat from northern Uganda in a zoomorphic shape.
Above – A rare ceremonial hat from the Makonde of Mozambique.Bird feathers on a wicker frame with a central beaded decoration.Early to mid 20th century.

Above – A very colourful and old elders hat from the Cameroon. Below -Three tribal hats.Two Lega hats DRC with shell decorations and

one [center] ceremonial hat from Ghana.All mid last century or before.  


Above – A Lega elders hat decorated with early European buttons.Mid 20th century.


Above. A fantastic porcupine quilled ceremonial hat. Kaka – Cameroon



Above – A group of colourful woven hats worn by the Dorsi men of southern Ethiopia.  £90 each.

About the gallery. Tribal Gathering specializes in African art and adornment from all over Africa.It has been established for more then 15 years in Nottinghill area of London.Check the contact page for opening times and private viewings.

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