Spectacular Kuba textile in raffia formed by 117 panels about 16×16 cm. sewn on a frame with tassels to form what was probably a man’s ceremonial skirt about 6.5 meters long and 65 cm wide.
Squares made with the “tie and dye” technique alternate with embossed decorative panels with the “Kasai velvet” technique.
Each square has a different geometric design: lines, crosses, hooks, zigzags, and the so-called “tire” based on the footprints left on the sand by the colonialists’ motorcycles.
According to tradition, Kuba people, with the amazement of the Belgian officers, showed much more interest in the tracks left by the tires than in the bikes that they had never seen before.
In the “Kasai velvets” nothing is drawn on the raffia panel before the embroidery begins: the patterns take shape from the imagination of sewing women and can change as the work proceeded.
In the panels made with the “tie and dye” technique drawings are made on a black field so that circles and short lines easily emerge from the natural colour of raffia.
Size: 640 x 65 cm.