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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.

Statue Lengola
African art > African Statues > Statue Lengola

The stylized African art of the forest tribesCubic volumes and sharp angles make up this Lengola statue, whose characteristics are similar to Metoko sculptures. A flat-cut face, with its orbits with two large, lowered eyelids, ends in a geometric jaw at the end of which the mouth is just incised. The short arms, spread from the straight bust, are equipped with large digitized hands. The apron hips are extended with parallel tubular limbs on rounded feet. Cracks, beautiful satin patina and abraded. This male cult effigy comes from the Lengola , living near the Metoko in the center of the Congolese basin between the Lomami and Lualaba rivers, people of the primary forest dedicated to the worship of a single God, rare monotheism in Africa. Their company, Bukota , welcoming both men and ...


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480.00

Female figure Dogon
African art > African Statues > Statue Dogon

This figure could represent Ya Sigine , a woman whose role is to be the counterweight of the male omnipotence in the social and political order within the Dogon society. This figure, Ya Sigine , would embody the mythical ancestor who allegedly stole the masks from supernatural beings, making a captive an old Albarga introduced to the secrets of masks. The woman initiated to the Ya Sigine has since been the only woman who can participate in dogon rituals and enjoy a masked funeral. In the ladle at its disposal would be contained the powerful nyama . Ya Sigine is consistently depicted on the satimbe masks which she also overcomes: the gaze is stretched towards the horizon, the chest is straight, but above all the arms are disproportionately long. This protective sculpture presents ...


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490.00

Hat Bamileke/ Juju Hat
objet vendu
African art > Usual african items > Bamileke hat

The Sumptuous Bamileke headdresses in traditional African art. This copy of prestigious African adornment, worn by the notables, unfolds in multicolored feathers. It was on the occasion of the elephant dance, tso, that the members of the Kuosi society, Kwosi, wore these impressive headdresses. They were worn over a multicolored costume consisting of a large beaded mask with large circular ears, mbap mteng, a fabric fabric, ndop, adorned with monkey fur and a leopard belt. These dances took place during festive ceremonies and funerals. Hats were once made from parrot feathers, now wild guinea fowl, the rarity of which was high cost. The feathers are attached to fabric-covered wooden strips, placed around a circular frame bound by a basket of wicker fibres. A society originally composed of ...


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Lega initiation statuette
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African art > African Statues > League figurines

The African art of the Lega , Balega, or Warega , is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made of ivory, some of which were kept in a basket intended for the highest rank of bwami of different Communities. This type of statuette of tribal art Iginga ( Maginga plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of the Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives, and governing social life. This organization was subdivided into initiation stages, the highest being the Kindi.Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also called Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on top of hills. The role of the leader, kindi , is held by the ...


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

The art of weaving Kuba
Products in Zaire by the Shoowa, Bashoowa, subgroup Kuba , these fabrics forming real first art paintings, consist of a raffia textile base on which threads are cut to the brim, forming an effect velvet 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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Articulated puppet Janus Maaniw Bozo
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African art > Puppets > Articulated puppet Janus Maaniw Bozo

In African art, Bozo puppets are zoomorphic or anthropomorphic.

This is a janus female bust with removable movable arms. At the top throne a similar bust janus also whose arms are bent, palms of visible hands. It rests on a conical base allowing it to be worn as a crest mask on the top of the head. As tradition in the Bozos, the room has a very rich polychrome. These puppets participate in the various shows that are organized at the initiative of the young people of the villages, mainly in the Ségou region. In Mali, the invention of the puppet is attributed to the geniuses of the bush who removed Toboji Centa, a bozo fisherman. During his stay with the geniuses, the man becomes familiar with this unknown art. Returning home, he goes to the blacksmiths sculptors and teaches ...

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Zoomorphic mask Wé, Guéré
African art > African mask > Wé Mask

A mask of "frightene" embodying an ancestor, this object is endowed, for the Wé of southwestern Côte d'Ivoire, with a power enhanced by the accessories that accompany it. In this case, a beard composed of raffia, bells, fangs and horns, attached to a bulge of fabric highlighted by tubular pearl necklaces cast with a ritual ointment. The wide gaping jaw is hemmed in with a hardened cloth that holds a cord, giving the appearance of thick lips. The helmeted forehead, whose furrows with red pigments are covered with brass nails, is adorned with two zoomorphic circular ears. White kaolin residue, matte surface.
The Dan, to the north, and the southern Wé (including the Guéré, the Wobé of the northeast and the Wé of Liberia called Kran or Khran), made frequent borrowings due to their ...


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380.00

Altar figure Dogon Tellem
African art > African Statues > Statue Dogon

Dogon African art.
This female effigy with an altier face adopts a ceremonial attitude that contrasts with the presence on its knees of Nommo couple figures, mythical ancestors born of the god Amma, in the form of children. The latter support the sagging chest in a similar attitude, arms raised. Irregular matte surface, eroded, gully wood, cracks and native restorations. The African tribal statues of the Dogon can also be worshipped by 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 altars of ancestors and participate in various rituals including those of periods of seeds and harvests. However, their functions remain little known. Stylistically influenced by the Tellem ...


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780.00

Bamoun Mask, Bamun
objet vendu
African art > African mask > Bamileke Mask

African art productions among the grassland chiefdoms
This mask made in heavy wood has a jovial appearance accentuated by the vivacity of its colorful pearls. This type of Bamoun masks are worn on the top of the head, unlike most Bamileke face masks. A wooden soul is covered with a fabric that hugs the shapes of the object, on which thousands of beads are glued, each color being endowed with a particular symbolism in relation to the different chiefdoms. The mustache and ears have been covered with "Pe" , a mixture of palm oil and padua wood, blood-red wood, some of which are covered during the ceremonies of rejoicing, and which, after being grated, is kept in containers in carved wood. Slight cracks and abrasions.
Within the territory of Cameroon's Grasslands live the ...


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Kasai Kuba Velvet
African art > African Textile > Shoowa Velvet

Produced in Zaire by the Shoowa, Bashoowa, subgroup Kuba , these fabrics forming real paintings of tribal art, consist of a raffia textile base on which threads are cut to the brim, forming a velvet effect accentuated by the 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 forging. It was the men ...


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80.00

Figure of reliquary Fang of Byeri
African art > African Statues > Statue Byeri

Ex-French tribal art collection.
Several variants of Fang Byeri statues make up African Art Byeri. Each family has a "Byeri", or reliquary box, in which the bones of ancestors are preserved. These boxes were guarded by the oldest man in the village, the "esa". The reliquary boxes were topped with a statue or a head that acted as custodian of the "byi" boxes. These were kept in a dark corner of the box, and were intended to divert evil influences to someone else. They were also used during the initiation ceremonies of young people linked to the company "So". During the holidays, the statues were separated from their boxes and paraded. This statuette intended to be recorded in a basket-reliquary by the posterior stalk, eroded, has a dark side in which are set copper pupils. Metal ...


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180.00

Couple of statuettes Ibeji Ere Yoruba
objet vendu
African art > African Statues > Ibedji statuettes

The Ibeji , alternative images in African art
Collars of round and tubular multicolored beads, ankle bracelets and large aluminum rings, constitute the "abiku", abundant adornments with the apotropaic function of effigies of twins. The space formed by the position of the fingers of the hand illustrates the aesthetic traditions of African art of the Abeokuta in the state of Egba. Scarifications are numerous on the faces. Erosions. In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, the remaining twin takes over.
There were also times when a ...

Statue Dogon Wakara
African art > African Statues > Statue Dogon

Religious cults and African dogon art
Sculpted mostly to order placed by a family and in this case arranged on the family altar Drawn Kabou , the tribal statues Dogon can also be the object of worship on the part of the whole community when they commemorate, for example, the founding of the village. These African statues, sometimes embodying the nyama of the deceased, are placed on altars of ancestors and participate in various rituals including those of periods of seeds and harvests. However, their functions remain little known. Parallel to Islam, dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lebe, relating to fertility, under the spiritual authority of the Hogon, the Wagem , cult of ancestors under the authority of the patriarch, the Binou invoking the spirit ...


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420.00

Ancestor statue Ndengese Congo
African art > African Statues > Statue Ndengesé

A central African people based in Kasai, a neighbour of the Kuba, the Ndengese form one of the clans of a common ancestor Mongo, some of them from upper Nile. They produced statues of art first to the absent or truncated lower limbs, covered with graphic symbols, symbolizing the prestige of the leader. The flared hairstyle topped with a summit horn is characteristic of the hairstyles acquired by the Totshi chefs belonging to the association ikoho and evokes particular proverbs. It symbolizes respect, intelligence and maturity. The face seems to be in meditation. The neck has a sling. The bust bears losangic scarifications in relief, with the aim of differentiating socially and aesthetically. The clasped hands highlight the protruding umbilical. Dark brown patina abraded. Desication ...


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450.00

Mask Sogho / Vuvi
objet vendu
African art > African mask > MasqueTsogho

Related to the African Okuyi masks of the Punu ethnic groups Shira tribes, African masks produced by peripheral groups, Vuvi, Galoa and Mitsogho , are also covered with white pigments aimed at apotropaic. Some, polychrome like our copy, sport colorful highlights. The slanted visor headdress, reminiscent of a hair fashion in the Shira group, was the front part of a hairstyle with shells. This mask offers a nose punctuated with perforations and a diamond mouth under which a grooved band evokes the scarifications of the ethnic group. The forehead is divided into two symbolic tones. A basket helmet, which is concealed by a fiber textile, is attached to the upper contours, bordered by a raffia braid extending sideways into two long mats.
The ethnic group Mitsogho is established in ...


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Kasai Kuba Shoowa Velvet
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African art > Usual african items > Textile Cuba

Beautiful density for this wide panel offering patterns related to body scarifications in use in Congo.Yellow ochres, brown ochres, and black combine in a neutral polychromy. Excellent state of preservation.
Products in Zaire by the Shoowa, Bashoowa, subgroup Kuba , these fabrics forming real first 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 ...


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Mask hem janiform Igbo
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African art > African mask > Igbo Mask

This African Igbo mask called Ikorodo in the Nsukka region of southern Nigeria glorifies youth and beauty, thanks to narrow slits for the eyes, a face with sharp white features, scarifications and generally tattoos in checkerboards or ornamental lozenges. The headdress here is composed of braids forming a crenellated crown highlighting the scene at the top: four characters with bleached faces surrounding two birds. The double face here evokes the foresight of a mask of power. The walls of the hem are thin, the abraded surface has cracks in desication.

The white color of the mask agbo-gho-mmwo or ikorodo refers to ancestral spirits, these masks frequently accompanying the deceased during funeral rites. Indeed, mmwo means " spirit of the dead", and especially of young girls, ...


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Boulou Maternity Statue
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African art > African Statues > Boulou Statue

Zoomorphic figures in African art.

Incarnating the spirit of a great ape, this monkey sculpture with its cub has benefited from libations of which a crusty aggregate remains on the surface, mixing feathers of chicks and animal hair. Colorful pigment tops. Desication cracks.
Situated between Cameroon and Gabon, in the equatorial forest, the boulou are part of the Fang ensemble. Like the Fangs of South Cameroon famous for their large white masks, the Boulou also practiced the ritual Ngil to fight witchcraft and poisoning. Ngi is the gorilla, a fearsome animal to which the applicant identifies after his acceptance into the secret society.


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Monnaie Kapsiki
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African art > Usual african items > Monnaie Kapsiki

Palaeomancers in traditional African art The Kapsiki form one of the ethnic groups that make up the Kirdi group established in the extreme north of Cameroon. These "pagans "(Kirdi) as the Islamized peoples have named them, include the Matakam, Kapsiki, Margui, Mofou, Massa, Toupouri, Fali, Namchi, Bata, Do ayo ... They live from farming, fishing and breeding, the blade attached to a neck was also used as currency, losing then. In Africa, before the colonial period, payments were never made in coins .The transactions were made using cowries, pearls, cattle, kola nuts, but also metals. In Sierra Leone, the goods were evaluated in relation to iron bars called barriferri. In 1556 in Djenné Jean-Léon the African observed that the populations used the iron to pay of the things. The king ...


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Yohoure Lomane Mask
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African art > African mask > Yaoure Mask

African art Yohoure
Ram horns and a volatile with unfurled plumage offer a colorful image for this African mask belonging to the company I. A tripartite hair carefully engraved with triangular motifs borders the forehead of this Yohouré face, Yaouré, with regular features, while an open collar fills the contours of the face. The smooth, saatin surface has a dark lightening colour on the protrusions and polychrome tones. This copy, which could be attributed to the group of Anoman , Lomane , (bird) is part of the fourth of the seven masks I originally danced around the deceased and leaned up to touch him for a purifying purpose. It also appears at present during rejoicing. The Yaouré are a subgroup of the people Akan found in Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana. Geographically close to the ...


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Statue of rider Eshu Yoruba
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African art > African Rider > Statue Yoruba

African art and iconographic complexity of Yoruba statuary
Focused on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, the Yoruba religion relies on artistic sculptures with coded messages (aroko). They are designed by sculptors at the request of followers, soothsayers and their customers. These spirits are supposed to intercede with the supreme god Olodumare.This horseman's sculpture whose role is to facilitate communication with the afterlife values a divinized ancestor or a orisha, one of the 400 gods of the Yoruba pantheon. The figures of warrior saze are widespread in Yoruba iconography, the horse being rare in these regions that only kings could once allow themselves. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu were born following the demise of the Ifé civilization and are still the basis of the ...





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