X86.904 Skirt

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Not Currently On View in Intersections 


Kuba peoples
Democratic Republic of the Congo
19th century
Raffia and natural dye
L: 404.0 cm, D: 74.0 cm (L: 159.0 in, D: 29.1 in)
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of the Christensen Fund. X86.904


In addition to their role as markers of status, Kuba textiles have been used as currency, as tribute payment, in marriage negotiations, and at funerals. Both men and women wear raffia skirts, though men’s skirts are almost two times longer than those worn by women. Kuba women, as well as men who impersonate women in performances, often wear overskirts around their waists on top of their larger skirts. A deceased person’s spouse and friends may offer raffia skirts and other textiles to blood relatives of the deceased before the burial. The desire to have the deceased person recognized in the land of the dead often also requires that the living dress the corpse in fine raffia textiles.

Source: Exhibition Wall Text: Intersections: World Arts, Local Lives, 2006