Art/ Collection/ Art Object


20th century
Nyoro peoples
Height: 10 1/4 in. (26 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Eve Glasberg and Amyas Naegele, 2013
Accession Number:
Not on view
Highly elegant and refined burnished bottles such as this one are said to be created by Nyoro artists from Western Uganda, as well as by related neighboring cultures. The pots are thin-walled, gourd-shaped, and have a concave base that allows them to sit flat. Among the Nyoro and related groups, such finely crafted pottery have long been the province of men. With their round body surmounted by a tall thin neck, this type of vessel imitated the shape of calabash gourds and was used as bottle for beer or drinking water. Polished with black graphite after firing, its surface presents a dark lustrous shine. In the 1950s, anthropologist and curator Margaret Trowell noted that a Nyoro artist "takes special pride in the appearance of their gourds, and although they rarely decorate them, rejoice in the most perfectly shaped vessel poshed to a rich red-brown."
Ally Kackoyi, Dar Es Salam, Tanzania, until 2007; Amyas Naegele, New York, 2007–2013

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