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African art items:


We offer you a large selection of unique pieces of African art. Coming from private collections or purchased directly “in situ”, these works are the subject of a special study to determine their provenance as well as their conditions of acquisition. We make it a point of honor to offer our customers quality works of African art, old or contemporary, acquired within the framework of an ethical market. It is the history of these pieces that we invite you to discover through our gallery and websites.

Songye Fetish
African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Songye Fetish

African statuette Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi) of the Songye whose face reproduces the kifwebe mask. Satin patina. Sculpture of balanced proportions, combining curved volumes and angular planes. Brown satin patina.
The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between god and men, responsible, among the Songye, for protecting against various evils. The large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, and the smaller figures belong to an individual or a family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba, to whom they are related through common ancestors. (ref.: Treasures of Africa, Museum of Tervuren, ed. De ...


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180.00

Kongo Spoon
African art > Spoons, ladles > Kongo Spoon

Belgian African art collection.
Anthropomorphic spoons are recurrent in African tribal art. This copy is distinguished by the anthropomorphic motif depicting a notable sitting with imposing presence. We find the canons of Kongo art. This type of ritual object also forms an outward sign of wealth and prestige.

Height on base: 41 cm.
Matte medium brown patina, chip on one arm, minor cracks.
The Vili , the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembe, the Bwende, the Yombé and the Kôngo formed the Kôngo group, led by King ntotela . Their kingdom reached its peak in the 16th century with the trade in ivory, copper and the slave trade. With the same beliefs and traditions, they produced statuary endowed with codified gestures in keeping with their vision of the ...


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180.00

Bulu Statue
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Bulu Statue

Ex-French collection of French African tribal art.
Embodying the spirit of a great ape, this animal statue also serves as a reliquary thanks to the hollowed-out part at the ribs. Vegetable moss remains on the walls. Matte patina, erosions, resin residue.
Established in the equatorial forest between Cameroon and Gabon, the Bulu are part of the Fang group who use reliquary sculptures as part of ancestor worship. Like the Fang of South Cameroon famous for their large white masks, the Boulou, Bulu, also practiced the Ngi , Ngil ritual in order to fight against witchcraft and poisoning. Ngi is the anthropoid monkey, a formidable animal with which the applicant identifies after his acceptance into the secret society. (African Art, Mazenod).


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480.00

Baule statue
African art > Maternity, statues, bronze, wood > Baule statue

Ex-French collection of African tribal art.
Probably the incarnation of a female goddess, this type of statue was kept on the bo osu altar where sacrifices were made to the spirits. Desiccation crack (base). Speckled grainy patina.
Around sixty ethnic groups populate Ivory Coast, including the Baoulé, in the center, Akans from Ghana, a people of the savannah, practicing hunting and agriculture just like the Gouro from whose cults and masks they borrowed. During the 18th century, united under a single banner, these Akan people were, according to legend, guided by Queen Aba Pokou to the region of gold mines in the east of Côte d'Ivoire to settle there. . The Waka-Sona statues, "being of wood" in Baoulé, evoke an assié oussou, being of the earth. They are part of a type of ...


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280.00

Kusus fetish
African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Kusus fetish

Former Belgian collection of African art.
The Kusu are established on the left bank of the Lualaba between the Bembe, Boyo, Hemba, Songye and Tetela. They have borrowed the artistic traditions of the Luba and the Hemba, including the cult of ancestors and that of mythical heroes, and have a caste system similar to that of the Luba. The primordial ancestor, named Soba, is said to be embodied in the sculpted figures of the Kusu. Their initiatory society, the bagabo, also uses protective fetishes against witchcraft. Lustrous brown patina. Residual kaolin incrustations.


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390.00

Yoruba statuette
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba statuette

Ex-British collection of African art African statuette decorated with necklaces of colored beads constituting the protective abiku adornments.
Sculpted according to the instructions of Ifa transmitted to the diviner, the babalawo, the Ibedji statuettes played the role of substitute for the death of the child. The statuettes are then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of it; she anoints them with oil and feeds them regularly. If it disappears, the remaining twin takes over. Considered to be much more than a physical representation of a loved one. The Ibedji statues influence the life of the family, which is why the latter continues to pray to them and offer them worship and libations.
Mahogany satin patina, drying cracks..


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250.00

Dogon Statue
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Dogon Statue

Ex-French collection of African tribal art This African Dogon statue depicts a subject in a reverential kneeling posture. The abdominal excrescence remains an enigmatic element. Ritual practices have formed a crust on the surface. Gray matte patina. Minor desiccation cracks.
Sculpted for the most part on orders placed by a family and in this case placed on the family altar Tiré Kabou, the Dogon tribal statues can also be the object of cults of the part of the entire community when they commemorate, for example, the founding of the village. These statues, sometimes embodying the nyama of the deceased, are placed on ancestral altars and participate in various rituals including those of sowing and harvest periods. Their functions, however, remain little known. Alongside Islam, ...


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480.00

Baule fetish
African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Baule fetish

Belgian collection of African tribal art. Property of the soothsayer komienfoué, often involved in the divinatory practices of the Mbra, this ancient, crudely sketched sculpture embodies a assié oussou, a "genius of nature" in Baoulé statuary.
Desiccation cracks. Ritual flaked patina.
Around sixty ethnic groups populate Ivory Coast, including the Baoulé, in the center, Akans from Ghana, a people of the savannah, practicing hunting and agriculture just like the Gouro from whose religions and masks they borrowed. Two types of statues are produced by the Baoulé in the ritual context: The Waka-Sona statues, "being of wood" in Baoulé, evoke a sassié oussou, being of the earth. They are part of a type of statue intended to be used as a medium tool by Komian diviners, the ...


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250.00

Lumbu Mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lumbu Mask

This African mask of the Lumbu type appeared during the Okuyi dance and cults dedicated to the ancestors, ritual practices shared with the Punu. According to some authors, masks without scarifications are masculine. Within the group named Shira, the Lumbu Loumbu, Balumbu, of Bantu origin and originating from the Congo kingdom, established themselves on the coastal part of Gabon, and in the Republic Congo, in the middle Ogooue. They keep the bones of their ancestors in reliquary baskets decorated with statuettes and other prestigious objects.
Lumbu and Punu produced these white masks of a similar appearance, the sculptors copied each other and the masks could be made for another group. Ref. : “Punu”. L.Perrois and C. Grand-Dufay; “Art and Kongos” M.L. Félix.


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340.00

Dogon pot
African art > Jars, amphoras, pots, matakam > Dogon pot

Dogon blacksmiths form an endogamous caste among the Dogon called irim. Nowadays they produce weapons, tools, and also work wood. Masters of fire", they are also supposed to heal burns (Huib Blom). The Nommo, a protective ancestor evoked in different forms in Dogon iconography, is said to be an ancestor endowed with the ability to manifest in a human or animal form, hence the frequent decorative motifs adorning the Dogon sculptures and African bronzes. The decorative friezes forming wavelets also form a symbol related to creation. Orange patina.
The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, myths and rituals. Their population is estimated at about 300,000 people living south-west of the Niger Loop in the Mopti region of Mali (Bandiagara, Koro, Banka), near ...


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280.00

Yombe Statuette
African art > Maternity, statues, bronze, wood > Yombe Statuette

The pfemba or phemba maternity figures, symbols of the mythical ancestor, are probably associated with fertility cults. The child would embody the matrilineal transmission of power. The subject's pupils are associated with clairvoyance. The Yombe decorated their textiles, mats and loincloths, with motifs related to proverbs glorifying work and social unity. Glossy black patina.
The Solongo cultures of Angola and Yombé were largely influenced by the Kongo kingdom from which they borrowed naturalistic statuary and religious rites by means of sculpted nkondo nkisi fetishes.
The Yombe are established on the west African coast, in the southwest of the Republic of Congo and in Angola. Their statuary includes remarkable maternity wards whose use remains little known.


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180.00

Punu Mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Punu Mask

Ex-Swiss collection of African tribal art . This type of dark-colored justice mask danced during the ikwara dance, on the occasion of difficult palavers. Dark grainy patina, erosions.
The white masks of Gabon, itengi, (pl. bitengi) were associated with the various secret societies of Gabon, including the Bwiti, Bwete, and the Mwiri ("to lead"), the latter spread over several levels of initiation, to which all Punu men belonged, and whose emblem was the caiman. The Punu did not use any masks in the rituals of Bwiti, unlike the Tsogo. These powerful secret societies, which also had a judicial function, had several dances, including the leopard dance, the Esomba, the Mukuyi, and the Okuyi dance, on high stilts, remaining the most widespread.
Source: "Visions d'Afrique, Punu" ...


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380.00

Tabwa Doll
African art > African Dolls > Tabwa Doll

Ex-Belgian collection of African art traditional dolls in African tribal art of the Tabwa. Used by the female initiation society, this statuette has feminine attributes and a protruding navel, scarifications comparable to those of members of the tribe. Golden brown patina.
The Tabwa ("scarify" and "write") constitute an ethnic group present in the South-East of the DRC. Simple farmers without centralized power, they united around tribal chiefs after having been influenced by the Luba. It was mainly during this period that their artistic movement was expressed mainly through statues but also masks. The Tabwa practiced ancestor worship and dedicated some of their statues to them called mkisi. Animists, their beliefs are anchored around ngulu, spirits of nature present in plants ...


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180.00

Akuaba doll
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Akuaba doll

Belgian collection of African tribal art Used among the Ashanti and Fantis of Ghana, theAkuaba doll statuettes (plural Akua'mma) are amulets used by Ashanti women to promote fertility. They are easily identifiable thanks to their stylized appearance. Their flat, circular head has a high forehead occupying the upper part, the features are generally drawn in the lower third of the head. A mark of beauty, the ringed neck also symbolizes prosperity. Carried on the backs of women, these statues are also accompanied by various rites, such as the ingestion of a potion, or the placement of the object on the family altar. After the birth of the child, the sculpture is used as a toy, and sometimes still offered to the healer in order to witness its effectiveness. Smooth speckled patina, brown ...


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240.00


Yoruba tray
African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Yoruba tray

French collection of African artSupports of the ritualist named babalawo (or Babalao), priest of Ifa in the Yoruba language, these African trays exist in three forms, including the circular one ( opon ribiti ) such as this example. They are intended for the Ifa, a divination system that represents the teachings of the orisha Orunmila, orisha of Wisdom. The babalawo claim to ensure the future through their communication with Orunmila. In Yoruba thought in Nigeria and among those of Benin, the orishas form a variety of divine spirits controlling natural forces. They are found mainly in the Yoruba cosmogony but more widely in West Africa and in the diasporas of Central and South America. The center of the tray, aarin opon, forms a table in which kaolin powder (or flour) allows the ...


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280.00

Baga Fetish
African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Baga Fetish

Collection of French African art. Rare bust female figure from the Baga. Delicately sculpted, the features compose a subtly concentrated physiognomy. Beneath a ringed neck, the swollen bust, draped in canvas, conceals a magical charge. The decoration of cowries refers to fertility and material wealth. Slightly satin nuanced patina. Desication cracks.
Mixed with the Nalu and the Landuman, the Baga live along the coasts of Guinea-Bissau in areas of swamps flooded six months a year. These Baga groups settled on the coast and living from rice growing are made up of seven sub-groups, including the Baga Kalum, Bulongic, Baga sitem, Baga Mandori, etc.... Along with the extinction of male initiations since the 1950s, women's societies organize danced ritual ceremonies during which ...


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240.00

Kumu masker
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Kumu masker

Ex-Belgian collection of African tribal art In use within clans living in the north of the Ituri region by the society of Nkunda diviners, this African mask called Nsembu is produced in male-female pairs. Pastillage refers to the animal world and the patterns that adorn bodies during initiatory rites.

Matte patina. Abrasions. Height on base: 52 cm.
The Kumu, Bakumu, Komo, live mainly in the North-East and the center in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Their Bantu language is komo or kikomo. Several ethnic groups are closely intertwined, with similar associations: the Mbole, the Yela, the Lengola, and the Metoko. Their artistic production also presents great similarities with that of the Metoko and Lengola. Their divination masks were exhibited during the closing ...


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290.00

Calabash Luba
African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Calabash Luba

French collection of African tribal art.
These calabashes with a figurative motif, banksishi (sing. nkishi), were used as part of the bugabo, a society dedicated to hunting, healing and war during the colonial period. The subject linked to the ancestors springs from a gourd around which a cord is wrapped. The object makes a clicking sound when shaken. Residues of ritual anointings dot the contours. The bust statuette, which was ritually oiled by the mediummvidyein homage to the ancestors, surmounts a hollowed-out calabash. Secret ingredients, within magical reach, had previously been introduced into the object. During the ceremonies, the sound of the elements tinkling in the kabwelulu stirred by the ritualist, were supposed to attract the attention of the invoked spirits. Among ...


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240.00

Lele Mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lele Mask

African mask Lele whose fine, carefully detailed features, crowned by a chiselled hairstyle, spring from an almost flat surface. The mask is extended by a quilted structure in wickerwork and raffia whose ribbons come back around the face. Slight lack. Glossy black patina.
The Lélé, close to the Tschokwe and the Pende, live in the west of the Kuba kingdom and share common cultural specificities with the Bushoong of the Kuba country. Both groups adorn their prestige objects with similar motifs. Their society headed by a "nymi" king, includes three classes, that of the Tundu or warlords, the Batshwa ("those who reject the Tundu authority") and the Wongo called by the name of the neighboring ethnic group. The ritual ceremonies are under the authority of the oldest, chiefs of each ...


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150.00

Kongo Bronze
African art > Bronze, leopard, messenger, warrior, statue, pirogues > Kongo Bronze

Ancestor figure, talisman of individual protection, green patina rubbed with pink ocher for a ritual purpose.
The Vili, the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembe, the Bwende, the Yombé and the Kôngo constituted the Kôngo group, led by King Ntotela. With the same beliefs and traditions, they produced a statuary endowed with a codified gesture in relation to their vision of the world. The nganga, both healers, were in charge of religious activities and mediation with the God called Nzambi through consecrated figures. Nkisis protective figures are crafted and charged by the nganga with all the necessary ingredients to combat a variety of ailments.
Source: "The Kôngo gesture" Ed. Dapper Museum; "Animal" ed. Dapper Museum; "Art and Kongos" M.L. Felix; "Kongo Power and Majesty" A. ...


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250.00

Boa Mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Boa Mask

Offering pierced ear flaps, as those of the Boa of the east once did, and a mouth lined with sparse teeth, this African mask conferred an impressive appearance to its wearer, which the contrast of colors accentuated. Supposed to render invulnerable and with the aim of terrifying the enemy, the African mask kpongadomba or "Pongdudu" of the Boa was ordered by the chief kumu who offered it to the bravest warrior. It was then kept in his wife's hut. Matte tricolor patina, losses, abrasions.
Height on base: 51 cm.
Close to the Mangbetu and the Zande, the Boa inhabit the savannah in the north of Democratic Republic of Congo. Some Boa would have used these masks for educational purposes with children since the pacification of the Uele region.


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240.00





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