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African art > African Statues > Beaded head
Made in the Cameroonian Grasslands using the traditional decorative technique using multicolored glass beads, this head reproduces the famous effigies of sovereigns. Meticulously applied to a terracotta surface, the beads accentuate the features and the royal headdress with strongly contrasting colours, while padouk powder lifts the inside of the ears and mouth.
In African art, the artistic current of which these sculptures are part is named after the ancient religious capital of Nigeria, Ifè, one of the many city-states established by the Yoruba.This civilization succeeded the Nok civilization. This city-state of Ilé-Ifé, whose rise culminated from the 12th to the 15th century, had an artistic tradition of royal portraits imbued with realism, funerary effigies in bronze but also in ...
African art > African Statues > Statuette Senoufo
A rich artistic tradition has manifested itself among the Senoufo by various masks, anthropomorphic sculptures, everyday objects and statuettes embodying the spirits of nature or divination. The latter benefited from sacrificial libations based on palm oil. During the Poro Society rites, the leaders of the initiates also used bird statues, some of them large in scope. Spotted patina. The Senoufo, the name given to them by French settlers, are mostly made up of farmers who have dispersed between Mali, Côte d'Ivoire, and Burkina Faso. The councils of elders, led by an elected chief, administer the senoufo villages. Governed by matrilineal traditions, they are composed of clusters of dwellings named katiolo . Each of them has its own association Poro which introduces young boys from the age ...
African art > African mask > Baga Mask
This rare face mask from the Northern Baga features the Nimba, a buzzed nose evoking a bird's beak over a tubular mouth, a summit ridge, and rounded ears. A nailing highlights the volumes, while parallel furrows embellish the surface. This mask would embody an idealized baga woman, and principles of fertility and abundance of harvests. They occur during harvests, marriages or deaths. Mate patina with grainy redious kaolin inlays.
Mtês Nalu and Landuman, Baga live along the coast of Guinea-Bissau in areas of swamps flooded six months a year. They believe in a creative god called Nagu , Naku , which they do not represent, and which is accompanied by a male spirit whose name is Somtup , depicted by a large cage covered with raffia whose top is a bird's head. He is assisted by the ...
African art > Usual african items > Bronze Dogon
The emblematic cuts of African dogon
The blacksmiths Dogon forment an endogamous caste among the Dogon called irim . They now produce weapons, tools, and also work with wood. " They are also supposed to treat burns (Huib Blom). The Nommo, a protective ancestor evoked in various forms in Dogon iconography, is said to be an ancestor endowed with the ability to manifest itself in a human or animal form, hence the frequent decorative motifs adorning the sculptures. Grey-green patina.
The Dogons are a people renowned for their cosmogony, myths and rituals. Their population is estimated at about 300,000 souls living southwest of the Niger Loop in mali's Mopti region (Bandiagara, Koro, Banka), near Douentza and part of northern Burkina (northwest of Ouahigouya). Their religious ...
African art > African mask > Fang Mask
African fang rituals and masks.
Soft bois, dry patina, erosions.
The appearance of these kaolin-coated masks (the white color evokes the power of ancestors), in the middle of the night, could cause dread. This type of mask was used by the male society ngil in northwestern Gabon, southern Cameroon, and Equatorial Guinea. This secret society was in charge of initiations and fought against witchcraft. The ngil was a purifying fire rite symbolized by the gorilla. The wearers of these masks, always in large numbers, appeared at night, lit by torches. Their intervention was also linked to the judicial function by identifying the culprits of the bad deeds within the village. The Fang ethnic group, based in a region stretching from Yaounde in Cameroon to Ogooué in Gabon, has never ...
African art > African Statues > Statue Colon
Commonly referred to as 'colon' but sometimes embodying a type of 'ideal spouse' according to individual criteria, this male figure evokes Senegalese soldiers. (" African Art Western Eyes, Baule, Vogel, p.253 to 257)Patine smooth polychrome abrased.
Two types of statues are produced by the baoulé in the ritual setting:The Waka-Sona statues, being of wood in baoulé, evoke a assed oussou, being from the earth. They are part of a type of statues intended to be used as a medium tool by the soothsayers komian, the latter being selected by the spirits asye usu in order to communicate the revelations of the afterlife. The second type of statues, made according to the indications of the soothsayer, are the spouses of the afterlife, male, Blolo bian or feminine, the blolo bia. This type of ...
African art > African mask > Masque League
Two attached faces, sculpted in a spherical volume, offer similar features for this African Lega mask. This unusual African Lega mask indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, a learning society composed of different grades, and which was joined by the wives whose spouse had reached the third level, that of the ngandu . Two-tone patina, cracks and slight gaps. Height on a base: 28 cm.
At the Lea, the society of the Bwami open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by ...
African art > African Jar > Pot Tschokwe
Inspired by Portuguese Baroque, this chokwe tobacco pot offers a baluster foot made up of layered elements. It is crafted from checkered alveoli lined with volutes. These regal sculptures travelled with the court and were sometimes offered to other chefs. Tobacco use was indeed widespread among the Chokwe, and smoke was an integral part of offerings to the spirits ajimu. Use patina, cracks and abrasions of pigments.
Paisiblely settled in eastern Angola until the 16th century, the Chokwé were then subjected to the Lunda empire from which they inherited a new hierarchical system and the sanctity of power. Nevertheless, the Chokwé never fully embraced these new social and political contributions. Three centuries later, they eventually seized the capital of the Lunda, weakened by ...
African art > African mask > Masque Tetela
This blind mask, of a small size, engraved with alternating parallel grooves arranged in orange motifs, evokes songye sculpture. The very geometric nose is a distance from a narrow mouth placed in a protruding chin. The outlines are pierced with holes. Two-tone matte patina.
Eparated in the Kasai basin, the Tetela of Mongo origin have been the source of constant conflicts with their neighbors. They also participated extensively in the slave trade. Their very diverse sculpture is marked by the influence of groups living in contact with them: in the north, their art has been subjected to the influence of forest populations such as the Mongo, in the northwest that of the Nkutschu, and in the west that of Binji and Mputu. The Kuba traditions were also a source of inspiration, as were ...
African art > African Chair > Tabouret Luba
A female effigy, receptacle of a deceased sovereign leader (Luba, Roberts) supports the circular tray resting on his headdress. Her attitude highlights the female genitalia associated with fertility. This stool named lupona , or kioni or kipona, kiona, according to the sources, constitutes the meeting point of the sovereign, his people, and protective spirits and ancestors, where symbolically and spiritually past and present mingle. It was once the seat on which the king was inducted mulopwe. The seats were arranged on leopard skins at the inauguration of the new leader. It was only after sitting there that his address was royal and divine. Apart from these exceptional circumstances, the seats were not used and remained stored in secret locations. Exceptional oiled patina spotted, ...
African art > African mask > Hemba Mask
The spirit of a primate would be embodied in this hemba mask split with a wide rictus. The prominent forehead houses long eyelids, wrinkled by the grimace. A long nose extends vertically. Mate surface, rough, residual ochre deposits.
Only two types of Hemba masks have been identified: that of an anthropomorphic type with regular features, whose pointed chin recalls statuary, and those depicting monkeys, the soko mutu, and whose functions remain little known, but which probably belonged, according to J.Kerchache, to the secret societies bugabo and bdambudye . The smallest copies (about 20 centimetres) are said to have been carried by hand during rituals intended for the protection of the home and fertility. In addition to the kabeja janiform statuettes, the statues of male ancestors, ...
African art > African mask > Luluwa Mask
The Lulua, or Béna Lulua from West Africa, settled in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Their caste-based social structure is similar to that of the Luba. They produced few masks, but especially statues of ancestors representing the ideal warrior, mulalenga wa nkashaama, as well as the head of the Leopard Society and statuettes mbulenga related to the spirits of nature. Despite Kalamba Mukwenge's attempt at the end of the 19th century to eradicate traditional cults by using autodafés, the religious system was maintained, such as the fertility cult tshibola. The Luluwa's distinctive eye-watering face is accompanied by the warrior's headdress and a sculpted beard divided into five braids. Curvilinear and keloid patterns in lozenges alternate on the surface. Light abrasions, red ...
African art > African mask > Lwalu Mask
African masks Lwalwa, Lwalu.
It is near the Kasai River that the Lwalwa live, between Angola and Zaire. Historically having a matrilineal society, the Lwalwa, after being influenced luba and songye, adopted a patrilineal system within their rudimentary political and social organization. The male mask nkaki, nkaaki, carved from wood mulela, is one of four types of masks produced by the privileged caste formed by their sculptors. These craftsmen, according to their merits, can become conductors and organize dances, including the balango, during which acrobatics are performed by young dancers. These masks are then displayed, or worn during initiation ceremonies, or to soothe the spirits after an unsuccessful hunt.
A conical hairstyle painted with geometric patterns overcomes a ...
African art > African Statues > Statue Metoko
All in geometry, this female statue named Ibubi , belonging to the Nkumi, former Bukota , was used as the figure kakungu for the initiation rites of male society and also played a role in mediations during litigation. Semi-mate two-tone patina. Very light cracks.
The Metoko and the Lengola, whose ritual sculptures are very close, are peoples of the primary forest dedicated to the worship of a single God, a monotheism rare in Africa. Their three-grade society, the Bukota, structured daily life and welcomed both men and women. It represents the equivalent of the association Bwami of the Lega. The sculptures played a role in the initiation ceremonies, and were then placed on the tomb of high-ranking initiates. Kakungu in particular was surrounded by other sculpted objects, ...
African art > African Statues > Statuette Ubangi
African art counts two types of Azande statues: The statues Kudu , with a height of between 30 and 50 cm represent ancestors, and statues Yanda 10 to 20 cm, of animal or human form, having an apotropaic role, exhibited during divinatory rites during the rituals of the society Mani . Stylized volumes for this Yanda figure carried by legs apart, semi-restended. Large arches running up to the jaws make up a female face in which the pupils are exorbited.
samsasy dark satin.br>Olysed formerly referred to as Niam-Niam because they are considered anthropophages, the tribes grouped under the name Zande , Azandé , settled, from Chad, on the border of the R.D.C. (Zaire), Sudan and the Central African Republic. According to their beliefs, man is endowed with two souls, one of whom turns into a ...