East African objects - Tanzania and Mozambique
Rand African Art home page

Sukuma Culture and Tanzania
by Mark H.C. Bessire

A few good books on Tanzanian art and culture
From Ritual to Modern Art - Tradition and Modernity in Tanzanian Sculpture
Edited by Manfred Ewel and Anne Outwater

"This beautifully produced and lavishly illustrated book addresses the huge imbalance in appreciation and
representation of African art. Museums, exhibitions, lavish catalogues, magazines, and publications on African art
are largely dominated by non-African scholars and institutions. These imbalances lie in the economic and political
discrepancies, the history of European colonialism in Africa, and the Western tradition of scholarship and public
education on art, history and ethnography. Outside Africa, East African art has been assumed to be more or less
non-existent. This is one of the few publications to have come out of Tanzania, bearing witness to the
appreciation of sculptural art and its tradition in that country. The book arose out of a symposium on The
Significance of Traditional Cultures for Today's Society which brought together Tanzanian and other experts
organised by the National Museums of Tanzania and the German Cultural Centre in Dar es Salaam. Papers from
that symposium, together with additional articles on the history and current state of sculpture in Tanzania,
present art from an African perspective, and include contributions from Western scholars joining forces with
African scholars. Sociological, ethnological and art historical approaches are included, illustrating sculpture as
the prime example of fine art in Africa, both in its purely aesthetic sense and intricately linked with its ever
changing cultural context."

Available from the
Michigan State University online bookstore and also Amazon.com

and also the book (if you can find it)
Mwana hiti: Life and art of the matrilineal Bantu of Tanzania
by Marc Leo Felix
"Book Description: 1990. Edition limited to 1,000 copies, Munich, 1990. The first treatise on the mwana hiti, the
wooden, highly stylized torso of a female figure, this important volume accompanied a major 1990 exhibition of
mwana hiti and other objects of Tanzanian art at the Fred Jahn Gallery in Munich. Impressively thorough with
almost 500 excellent photographs and containing important essays and research data on stylistic differences,
typology, and the ethnography of Zaramo and Kwere peoples of eastern Tanzania, this study is another
impressive work by an author whose writings are a boone to collector and scholar alike. The edition was limited to
1000 copies and is out of print 505 pages, text in English and German, 481 photographs, 8 drawings, 3 figures,
12 maps."

When I did this page there was a copy available at
or by searching Abe Books I found a few copies.