A barkcloth from the Mbuti people in the Ituri forest of northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. These were made from the inner bark of trees, pounded and prepared by men, then painted by women with twigs, fingers or twine. They were folded in half over a sash or belt and worn as ritual dress for celebrations and rites of passage.
This piece was collected in the 1980s by a noted ethnologist working on an Ituri forestry project. Published as a drawing in Mbuti Design: Paintings by Pygmy Women of the Ituri Forest by Georges Meurant and Robert Farris Thompson, p144, fig 16. A copy of the book will be included with purchase.