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African art items:


The achievements of African tribal art fascinated many European artists and collectors in the 20th century. From André Breton to Picasso, all were seized with a buying fever that quickly spread in the middle. If these sculptures are more of an artistic dimension for Westerners, it is nevertheless through their ritual sacralisation that they reveal themselves for the African peoples. Their ceremonial role confers on them a unique power that distinguishes them from other forms of ethnic art. These works were acquired (sold or offered by natives) throughout the twentieth century by ethnologists on mission or colonial cooperatives to be exhibited in museums, or integrated into prestigious private collections. This is the story of these pieces that we propose to discover through our gallery and our website.

Drummer figure Mbala Pindi
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African art > African Statues > Mbala Statue

This type of object was a sacred symbol of authority (Pindi).  The musician's hairstyle shares great similarities with the headdress mukote who, among the Western Pende with whom the Mbala shared the circumcision rituals mukanda , became a symbol of the struggle against colonization in the early 20th century. century ("Congo Masks", ed. M.L. Félix, p.114)
This figure of musician, mbundi-ngoma , accompanied by a figure of motherhood , was part of the pair of emblematic sculptures pindi attributed to the leader Mbala at his induction. After a retreat of a few days, the royal insignia and charms were attributed to him, intended to fight the powers opposing hunting, social peace, and harvests. Desication crack. Indigenous restoration using copper. Locally powdered satin patina.


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Couple of statues Deblé Senoufo
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African art > African Statues > Statues Debele

These figurative tribal statues named in the secret language of the Poro Debele , Deblé ("battes at a rhythm"), sometimes referred to as " child of poro " (Pon pia) or " spirit of the bush " (denge, or madengo). intervened in pairs during funeral processions or in ceremonies marking the end of initiation rites. The initiates of the society of the Poro , training the boys from the age of 7, wore them and hammered the ground by the pestle called " sedine " or " dol " according to the dialect, with rhythm, and to the sound of drums , opening and closing the door. The Senoufo of the centre, on the other hand, place them in the middle of the ceremonial circle. Then stored in a pen, sézing, they were supposed to protect these young initiates. These statues were mostly made in imputrescible ...

Bronze Benin commemorative head
African art > African bronze > Head Benin

Wearing a seaily that consisted of coral beads, from which laterally protrude from fins, this head with a circular border represents a ruler (oba) of Benin. Symbol of wealth, this coral reserved for kings and digesters of the palace had to be regularly anointed with the blood of the victims in order to acquire a magical power. The lateral appendages named ikekeze protrude from the crown. Golden beige patina.
Famous in benign art, altar heads, symbols of wisdom and receptacles of energy, were cast using the technique of lost wax like other bronzes. Benin art is described as a court art because it is closely associated with the king, known as oba. The tradition of Ifè's bronze classroom objects dates back to the 14th century.
The many bronze heads and statues created by the ...


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250.00

Masque facial  Anang Ibibio
African art > African mask > Anang Mask

This mask of the Anang, from the Group Ibibio, usually playing a beautiful young woman, was dedicated to the entertainment parties of the company Ekpo. The hairstyle develops into thick side shells frames a red-tinted face on which gashes on either side of the nose allow vision. The mouth reveals teeth traditionally cut into tip, beauty criterion. The surface offers an eroded wood. Burgundy patina, inlays of localized red pigments.
The Ibibios are a people of West Africa, mainly present in southeastern Nigeria (Akwa Ibom State), but also in Ghana, Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea. Secret societies are numerous among the Ibibio set up west of the Cross River. Without centralized government, their social organization is comparable to that of neighbouring Igbo. The cult of ancestors, ...


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280.00

Babanki Elephant Mask
African art > African mask > Babanki Mask

The African art of Grassland chiefdoms and beaded sculptures
The Babanki live in the northern part of the region called Grasslands, Cameroon . Their neighbours are the Kom, Wum and Bali. Under the influence of the Fulani invaders, many of them converted to Islam. They revered the ancestors who would incarnate in the skulls held by the elders of each lineage. Grasslands brotherhoods use zoomorphic masks, some decorated with pearls like Bamoun , symbolizing the wealth and royal prestige, called buffalo mask. They would indeed have the power to transform into an animal. In some lyings however, this mask is replaced by the wooden elephant mask. A symbol of prestige of the Fon , these sculptures were also the object of barter and present throughout this cultural area. (Animal, Dapper ...


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280.00

Kasai Kuba Shoowa Velvet
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African art > African Textile > Textile Cuba

African art and weaving
Products in Zaire by the Shoowa, Bashoowa, subgroup Kuba , these fabrics forming real tribal art paintings, consist of a raffia textile base on which threads are cut to the brim, forming a Velvet effect accentuated by contrasts of tone. The geometric patterns formed represent the bodily scarifications of the ethnic group or the decorations of the sculptures. These refined fabrics were intended to be used at the royal court, as a seat or cover, to enhance its prestige. They in many cases took value of money, or also followed their owners into the grave by covering the body of the deceased. It was King Shamba Bolongongo who introduced the technique of velvet weaving to the Kuba country in the 17th century. He had previously introduced the Kuba to the art of ...


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Couple figure Baoulé Asye usu
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African art > African Statues > Baoule Statues

Ex-French African artcollection.
Property of the soothsayer komienfoué, sometimes intervening in the divinatory practices of the Mbra, this couple evoking seated oussou, or "geniuses of nature", related to fertility, is depicted sitting in seats of the type Akan. Carefully braided hairstyles, checkerboard scarifications dotted around the body, beaded adornments, and the vigour of calves suitable for agricultural work, are part of the features of the baoulé statuary. Smooth dark skate. Two types of statues are produced by the baoulé in the ritual framework: the statues Waka-Sona , " being of wood " in baoulé, evoke a assay oussou , be of the earth. They are part of a type of statues intended to be used as a medium tool by The Komian soothsayers, the latter being selected by ...

Tshokwe Command Stick
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African art > Usual african items > Tshokwe Stick

The Tchokwe regaled them in African art
Em of power being part of the regalia, a mark of ostentation, this scepter represents political and symbolic power.  A round-bump sculpture created by an artist in the service of the chef, in the image of Chibinda Ilunga, hunter and mythical hero, founder of the Chokwé ethnic group, the character is identifiable thanks to his ample headdress with curved side fins . cipenya-mutwe). The chiefs had a major function in the propitiation rites intended for the hunting and fertility of women, the objects being adorned with this figure thus, presumably, a protective function.

Peacefully 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 ...


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Markha Crest Mask
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African art > African mask > Masque Warka

Beautiful very old piece, Baraldi collection. The detail of the face here is remarkable, by the drawing of the aquilin nose and the metal hemmed eyes. From the dome that forms the base of the object rises a ringed neck and then a long emaciated face plated with brass slats. Bringing together animal and human details, this mask recalls both the mask N'tomo and the crest Ci Wara relating to the antelope. The top rises in crenellated flat horn with cabochons and copper diamonds. The ears, horizontal, are embellished with pompoms and cauris. Patine mate, velvety. The metal tops acquired a particularly satin touch over time and ritual anointings.
The Markha are organized into societies of structured masks and hierarchical as found in many other ethnic groups. They have an initiation ...


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N gil Fang Mask
African art > African mask > Fang Mask

The solemnity of ngil masks in The African Art of Gabon

Among the white masks of Gabon, the Fang mask here has classic characteristics such as a large forehead and a powerful nasal appendage, whose central rib joins a triple arc eyebrow. The mouth melts when it in the chin. A summit ridge evokes tribal hairstyle. The object was covered with kaolin, with a dull, powdery surface. Erosions and lacks.
These tribal masks were worn by the (notable) authorities in charge of identifying those responsible for crimes.
The Fang culture is easily recognizable in many typical phenomena found everywhere this ethnic group has settled in Central Africa, in the three republics of Gabon, Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon.
among these are the epic tale of the Mvet and all the ...


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380.00

Luluwa Mask
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African art > African mask > Lulua Mask

It is in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo that the Lulua , or Bena Lulua, from West Africa, settled. 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 continued, such as the fertility cult tshibola.
The face with the characteristic protruding eyes of the Luluwa is accompanied by the warrior's headdress and a beard divided into five mats. Curvilinear and checkered patterns alternate on the black ...


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Punu Mask
African art > African mask > Punu Mask

These African masks from Gabon were associated with Gabon's various secret societies, including Bwiti, Bwete , and Mwiri ("le"), the latter spanning several levels of initiation, to which all belonged Punu men, and whose emblem was the caiman. The punu did not involve any masks in the rituals of the Bwiti, unlike the Tsogo. These powerful secret societies, which also had a judicial function, included several dances, including the leopard dance, the esomba , the Mukuyi, and the dance of the okuyi , on stilts, remainthe most widespread. This kaolin-bleached face mask, reminiscent of a deceased woman, was displayed at the dance called Okuyi. Classically capped with shells, the checkered scarifications, mabinda, absent on this copy, would constitute keloids associated, according to ...


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380.00

Female figure Mumuye
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African art > African Statues > Statue Mumuye

The African art Mumuye and the intriguing anatomy of its traditional statues
. Work of the sculptor named rati or molabaiene, this feminine effigy of the Mumuye has a long cylindrical bust on which point reduced breasts and a protruding umbilical. The rounded volume of the shoulders extends with flat arms spread from the torso, interminable, and whose notch suggests movement. The leg blocks devoid of feet is dug with parallel notches. The eyes are drawn in the wood and scarifications diagonally frame the incision forming the mouth. Ethnic lateral pendants are believed to be associated with a helmeted hairstyle, flanked here by a double sagittal crest, or the earlobes of women adorned with large discs. Dark brown, matte, long crack of desication.
The statuary emanating from ...


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Hemba Spoon
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African art > Usual african items > Hemba Spoon

The Hemba are a subgroup of the Luba ethnic group living in southeastern Zaire, east of the Lualaba River, best known for their statuary representing chiefs. Once under the rule of the Luba, these farmers and hunters practice the worship of ancestors through effigies long attributed to the Luba.The statues singiti were kept by the fumu mwalo and honored in ceremonies sacrifices were offered to them. Parallel to the authority of hereditary chiefs, secret, male societies such as the bukazanzi , and women, the bukibilo , played a big role within the clan.
(Source: "Treasures of Africa, Museum of Tervuren)Etablie on the spoon, this effigy of ancestor, soberly represented, adopts the classical attitude, hands positioned near the abdomen, legs semi-flexed on broad feet. The ovoid ...


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Baule Mask / Yaoure Lomane
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African art > African mask > Yohouré Mask

This African mask from the I features a hair meticulously engraved with decorative motifs. Horns rise sideways, encircling bird figures. The subtle shape of the face, the smooth and sainy patina, reveal the talent of the sculptors of African tribal art of Côte d'Ivoire. This copy named Anoman , Lomane , (bird) is part of the fourth of the seven masks I who originally danced around the deceased and leaned to touch him for a purifying purpose. It also appears at present during rejoicing. Heterogeneous patina in a range of browns.
The Yaouré are a subgroup of the Akan people present in Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana. Geographically close to the Baoulé and the Gouros, one can feel in the art yaouré the influence of these ethnic groups through the attention to detail and aesthetics. The ...


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Katanga Handa Croisette
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African art > African Currencies > Katanga Currency

The first coins Handa , also named Lukanu, or copper crucifixes, The Katanga , or cross of Saint Andrew , appear in the 13th century in tombs throughout the Shaba region, at the same time as the cainis and p glass paste, also used as a means of payment. Although associated with funeral rituals, during the 18th and 19th centuries, they were the tax that copper-producing regions owed to the Lunda Empire, a territory covering Katanga, northern Zambia and eastern Angola. Arab merchants also used it in trade routes stretching from Kenya to eastern Angola. Hungarian ethnologist Torday found that 3 to 5 of these crucifixes ranging from 0.275 to 2 kg were needed to acquire a male slave and 5 to 10 for a woman.
They were used until the 1920s when they were used to obtain poultry, cloths, ...


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Masque facial Adone Kurumba
African art > African mask > Kurumba Mask

The masks Adone of the Kurumba of ancient Sudan, like our copy, are danced to bring rain, at the beginning of the agrarian season or in case of severe drought. The features enhanced with burgundy red are concentrated in the middle of the reduced face mask. At the top, supported by a long curved neck, an antelope head with perforated ears and vertical horns has an ajar snout. Velvet polychrome matte patina. Local abrasions and desication cracks.
Acquitein in 1982 by the painter 'a target''blank' href'http://wiki.ibb.town/Karl-Heinz-Engstfeld' Karl Heinz Engstfeld and 'a target''-blank' href'https://evibb.de/home/wir-trauern-um-ruth-engst Engstfeld-Schremper , a glazier artist.
The African art sculptures of Bobo , Bwa, Kurumba and Mossi, living in Burkina Faso, ...


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480.00

Dogon Kanaga Mask
African art > African mask > Dogon Mask

Ex-collection French African art.
African Mask Kanaga of The Dogon, alternating black, white and light orange colors.
In funeral rites, members of the society Awa , dance with masks on the roof of the house of the dead, to lead his soul (nyama) to his eternal rest and to defend the living. The Kanaga mask is also used to protect hunters from revenge from the prey he has killed.

This copy is designed according to a recurrent structure: a horizontal central plank, the bottom of which in this case forms an anthropozoomorphic mask with rectangular features, with " arms" attached by animal skin ties on fur, and whose ends are pointed upwards and downwards. The conical mouth suggests the beak of a bird. In the pre-opening to the funeral or during the bereavement, many ...


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480.00

Couple of statuettes Ere Ibedji Yoruba
African art > African Statues > Statuettes Yoruba

Ibeji statuettes, incarnation of the missing child in African art YorubaWide globular almond eyes, tiara braids and identical faces that illustrate aesthetic traditions in African Yoruba art. Based on circular bases these effigies of naked twins are anewd with abiku magical adornments of metal rings and necklaces of glass beads, these elements being associated with the sacred. Chocolate patina, matte inlays, traces of indigo. In the language of the people Yoruba, ibeji means twin: ibi for and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin, statue "ere" sculpted by the "babalawo" . These African statuettes named ibeji are then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who has to take care of them; it can wash and feed them regularly. If she dies, the ...

Mossi Bwa Mask
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African art > African mask > Bwa Mask

Plane and circular, this African mask features a décor of symbolic geometric patterns arranged in successive circular friezes, and features a matte polychromy, burgundy red, white kaolin and dark grey. The mouth in which teeth are represented is hollowed out to allow the dancer's vision. Very slight abrasions.
The African art sculptures of Bobo , Bwa, Kurumba and Mossi, living in Burkina Faso, frequently take up and combine stylized elements borrowed from humans, animals or insects. It is the spirits of nature that are supposed to determine the well-being and prosperity of an individual, and adversity will be seen as the result of neglect scars of collective rites. It is therefore during various celebrations that the mask will personify a spirit of nature or that of an ancestor ...


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Kwele Ekuk Large Face Mask
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African art > African mask > Kwélé Mask

Ex-french African art collection.
Bichromy for this African Kwele mask, which comes in the form of a panel consisting of a central face wrapped in horns. These gabonese masks with a concave face, in the heart, have almond eyes and a triangular nose. Generally concealed, the mouth is here in the form of a thin incision giving a smiling appearance. Depending on the presence of horns and their arrangement, the masks are called pipibudzé, Ekuku zokou, etc. and are associated with the ancestors or spirits of the forest, " ekuk ".Tribu of the Kota group, the Kwélé , Bakwélé , live in forest on the northern border of the Republic of Congo. They live on hunting, agriculture and metallurgy. Practicing the cult called Bwété borrowed from the Ngwyes, which was accompanied by obligatory ...


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