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Unknown Maker
Heddle Pulley (Kono) Heddle Pulley (Kono)
20th century 20th century

Côte d¿Ivoire lies in the centre of a West African area, from Senegal to Cameroon, whose peoples produce narrow-strip weaving. While weavers may be female in some communities, they employ a different loom than men do. Typically, male weavers work on hand-operated looms, in a public place, creating narrow strips of cloth that can be attached to make larger pieces such as wrappers and furnishing fabrics. Fibres range from cotton, wool and silk to raffia.

Like their Baule neighbours, the Guro peoples adorned their weaving looms with carved heddle pulleys, five of which are seen here. The heddle pulley sits at the weaver¿s eye level, providing visual delight while also assisting the loom in its action. Heddles manipulate the warp threads; they must be raised and lowered so the weaver can pass the shuttle carrying the weft, or horizontal, threads. The pulley¿s function is to ease the heddles¿ motion as they continuously move up and down.

The imagery favoured by Guro carvers is usually a female or an animal head. The kono on the left (M84-323), appears to be a hybrid of human and animal, and retains the rod and spool over which a cord passed to connect the heddles in the up-and-down motion of weaving.

 
Unknown Maker
Guro peoples Guro peoples
Heddle Pulley (Kono) Heddle Pulley (Kono)
20th century 20th century
wood wood
height / width / depth: 15.10 x 5.70 x 3.30 cm; 5.94 x 2.24 x 1.30 in.
Gift of Justin and Elisabeth Lang, 1984 Gift of Justin and Elisabeth Lang, 1984
M84-323

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