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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.

Ancestor figure Dogon
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 world of ...


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450.00

Sakalava Statue
objet vendu
African art > African Statues > Sakalava Statue

Ex-Belgian African art collection.
The wind, salt and sand have helped to criss-cross this figure of male ancestor, giving the wood this characteristic desication, resulting in an exceptional dullness of the clear patina. Whitish deposits are also thought to be due to the abrasive action of salt. A top of the hat caps the figure with arms attached to the right bust, legs semi-flexed. The most famous plastic achievements of the Malagasy consist of a tribal statuary linked to funeral rites. While the Mahafaly statues were an integral part of pillars aloalo , fragments of panels above the heads testifying, the figures of Sakalava ancestors, in round-bump, represent the deceased and his companion of the opposite sex. The north-east of the tomb, sacred position associated with the ...


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Punu Crest
African art > African mask > Punu Crest

Ex-French African art collection.
Very famous in early art for their white masks with oriental expression, the Punu also produce anthropomorphic figures, rarer, with stylistic traits comparable to their masks. This tribal figure is depicted sitting on a dome, forming an altar figure or a crest mask. The closed eyes, in coffee bean, are surmounted by thin eyebrow arches coming together under the famous sign mabinda which was engraved on the forehead from an early age. This diamond scarification is also inscribed on the shoulders of the character and checkered on the temples. A white kaolin-based patina covers the entire face, like the masks okuyi, while a reddish coat covers the rest of the object. The headdress splits into many shells.
The Punu settled in southwestern Gabon ...


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380.00

Statue Dyonyeni Bambara, Bamana
African art > African Statues > Statue Bambara

African art among the Bambara.
This African statue of favorite "small", Nyeleni in Bambara, is shown in the frontal position, legs half-flexed on a circular base. The face is capped with a streaked crest, ears of the "en horseshoe "se draw laterally. The scarred body shows signs of motherhood and fertility through full and stretched breasts, in shells, and prominent abdomen. Oily patina, oiled, ocreted residues. The Bambara of central and southern Mali belong to the large Mande group, such as the Soninke and Malinke. They believe in the existence of a creator god generically called Ngala who maintains the order of the universe. His existence coexists with another androgynous god called Faro, who gave all the qualities to men and who grows the fruits of the earth. Large masked ...


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350.00

Female figure Mangbetu
African art > African Statues > Statue Mangbetu

African art Mangbetu.
Body paintings and scarifications, evoked by geometric plots, run through the face and body of this first art figure. Very large ears are noteworthy, as well as an extrusion of the pupils in probable connection with the trance aroused by the mediumic invocations. The fan is characteristic of that of the Mangbetu women: from an early age, children were compressed from the cranial box by means of raffia bonds. Later, the young women \


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280.00

Primitive Mint Kirdi Matakam
African art > Usual african items > Matakam Currency

African art and jet weapons
The Matakam also called Mafa, from the group named Kirdi or "païens" by the Islamic peoples, are a population of Central Africa, mainly present in the far north of Cameroon, also in Nigeria. The Kirdi include the Matakam, Kapsiki, Margui, Mofou, Massa, Toupouri, Fali, Namchi, Bata, Do ayo... They live on agriculture, fishing and livestock. The Matakam are known to have been the first in contact with German settlers. Monotheists, they believe a "god of humans" named Jigilé whose spelling can vary. Nevertheless, they remain animistic and therefore make sure to attract and retain the benevolence of the forces of nature. The ancestors being the mediators between the world of the living and Jigilé, the Matakam practice the cult of ancestors. In Africa, before ...


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120.00

Bobo crest mask
African art > African mask > Bobo Mask

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. An African mask decorated with polychrome diamonds symbolizing the magical amulets of the Bobo, it sports a female figure at the top linked to the geniuses of the earth. The masks are repainted with each new dance season. These heavy masks, usually designed around a hemispheric helmet with a horned crest or growth, occurred during agricultural rituals to restore the balance of the land. Their significance was revealed during the ...


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390.00

Fétiche Songye Nkisi
African art > African fetish > Fétiche Songye Nkisi

Former private collection of African art Jan Putteneers (Antwerpen, Belgium).
Piece on which we find the graphic constants of tribal art of the ethnic: mouth carried forward, nose in triangle, but especially the streaks on the face.
The magic charge is usually symbolized by a horn placed on the top of the head. A desecrated piece, the horn was removed.
Origins of Shaba in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Songye are related to the Luba, with whom they share common ancestors.


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490.00

Mossi Nakomse Statues
objet vendu
African art > African Statues > Mossi Nakomse Statues

Ex French collection of African art.

The body is straight, the arms slightly bent along the body. The face has scarifications on its contour as well as on the cheekbones. A very fine sagittal crest is engraved with lines simulating the hair, accompanied by two lateral mats. The patina is raw and has beautiful traces of desication.

The Mossi society was structured and hierarchical by its invaders as early as the 15th century. The two populations mixed and had progeny over the decades. The name Nakomse refers to the descendants of the Islamic horsemen, among whom political leaders were always chosen. Religious leaders were always descended from the natives, also known as Tengabibisi.

It is not surprising to find in the Mossi and Dogon some similarities in ...


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Kota membrane drum
African art > Usual african items > Tam Kota

Ex-Belgian African art collection.
The footing of this tam-tam Kota, which accompanied the ritual dances, is composed of two curved supports and two miniature reliquary figures, caryatids resting on a ring. These abstract effigies embodying the ancestors, named ngulu, surmounted the baskets bwed in which the relics of the ancients of high lineage were kept. The membrane of the drum, fixed by large wooden pegs around which raffia cords are stretched, returns largely to the sound box. Friezes of contrasting patterns animate the surface. The guardian effigies of reliquary were recorded in the baskets in which the bones and relics of the ancestors were inserted. In the exclusive presence of insiders, the clan's major decisions were made during ceremonies during which the reliquaries ...


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490.00

Statuette Chamba
African art > African Statues > Statue Chamba

Ex-Belgian African art collection.
An exceptionally soft and lustrous patina enhances this tribal statuette of the Chamba. A high ridge rises obliquely at the top of an ovoid head whose incisions mark the eyes and mouth, notches, ears, and a bulge, nasal ridge. Its particularity lies also in its long ringed neck. The hands-free arms seem to lean on the rectangle space that makes up the hips, giving it a semblance of dress. This pretty piece was polished and sained by gripping. Slight cracks. Settled since the 17th century on the south bank of the Benue River in Nigeria, the Chamba have resisted attempts to conquer the Fulani, nomads who settled in large numbers in northern Nigeria. They are known for their famous buffalo mask with its two flat jaws extending the head. The less ...


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350.00

Kongo Nkisi heaume mask
objet vendu
African art > African mask > Kongo Mask

Ex-Belgian African art collection.
Panage of the nganga, the kongo soothsayer, this African mask is topped with a bust whose head takes on the aggressive kongo characters of the piercing gaze and the mouth revealing slow limes. The psychic abilities, which the Kongo thought they fostered through the taking of hallucinogenic substances, are revealed by the looks of the black pupils. These types of masks were called ngobudi in reference to a terrible, terrifying thing. Braided cotton mats, raffia cords and pieces of dried fruit form amulets that would catalyze the power of the front-facing magic charge blocked by a mirror. Base of the heavily eroded hem.
These mediating masks, also present in initiation processes, were used by fetishists during healing rituals. At the same ...


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Masque Baga/Banda/Nalu
objet vendu
African art > African mask > Masque Baga/Banda/Nalu

French African art collection.
Mixed with Nalu and Landuman , Baga live along the coast of Guinea-Bissau in flooded swamp regions 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 , represented by a large cage covered with raffia whose top is a bird's head. Apart from the famous Nimba mask, they created a powerful mask, a hybrid of snake, gazelle, chameleon and crocodile, in order to communicate with the spirits of the forest, and which they wore obliquely on the head. A red, orange and yellow polychromy, contrasting with the dark patina, remains noticeable. Kaolin brush residue. Surface matte, dry and flaked. This piece comes from an African art collector who wishes to ...


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Figures of ancestors Fang Byéri
objet vendu
African art > African Statues > Statue Fang

Reliquary Guardians in Gabon's African Art
This rare double figure rises from common, muscular and semi-flexed lower limbs. A heavy tribal sculpture that can evoke a couple established on the same foundation, it was kept by the esa , the oldest man in the family, and presumably intended for a reliquary in which the bones of the ancestors were preserved. Glossy patina, black brown. Desication cracks. This type of object was placed in a dark corner of the box. The relics of the most remarkable ancestors were kept in cylindrical bark boxes near the layer of the lineage leader, initiated by the family cult of the Byery . Surmounted by a human effigy that affirmed their identity, they contributed to the protection of their descendants through regular sacrifices. Their function was to ...

Statue of Congo
African art > African Statues > Statue of Congo

Ex-Belgian African art collection.
This African statue Kongo has an aspect that could be attributed to the Solongo of Angola, its oval face reveals wide and fixed eyes, this " which constitutes the prerogative of an elder. Indeed, only middle-aged people can stare at us with such insistence in order to alert us to problems or odds. " Armed with the attributes of the hunter, she rests her machete on a miniature figure, a submissive enemy represented tied up. Between his feet rests a severed head, evoking power and warlike value. She is dressed in a suit made up of strings weaving raffia and canvas. Smooth, sain-like skate with ochre powder. The sorcerers nganga, both healers, were in charge of religious activities and mediation with the God called Nzambi through consecrated figures. ...


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380.00

Wall Ham Pilu doll
African art > African Statues > Fali doll

Belgian African art collection.
This African fertility doll, exceptional in its size and adornments, symbolizes the vows of marriage and the child that will be born from this union. It is the fiancé who realizes it and decorates it with multiple quolifichets before offering it to the young woman. A wooden soul is established on a quadrangular base, wrapped in a fabric and draped with thousands of pearl necklaces of various sizes and colors, round and tubular, associated with brass rings, parts, horns, leather, cotton cloth knots, cauris and raffia braids. A coconut bark hat was made for him, crowning the whole thing. The Kirdi , or "païens", as the Islamized peoples have named them, are established in the extreme north of Cameroon, on the border of Nigeria.They include the Matakam, ...


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2200.00

Edo benign bronze plate
African art > African bronze > Benin Plate

Ex-collection French African art.
Before the destruction of the palace of the Kingdom of Benin in 1897, the divine character of kings, the Oba , was illustrated by multiple works celebrating their power. In African tribal art, glorifying war scenes were reproduced on narrative plates, in bronze, and affixed to the walls. Sumptuous bronze altars, commemorative figures of deceased chefs, majestic felines, heavy bracelets, hairs and recades were produced in quantity in many workshops of smelters according to the technique of cast iron with lost wax. During the 16th century, oba Esigie commissioned the first copper alloy plates with embossed ornamentation. Many of them were cast in pairs to symmetrically decorate the pillars or walls of the palace. Olfert Dapper describes these plaques ...


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2650.00

Mask Dan/ Maou / Gagon
African art > African mask > Masque Dan

Theme of the bird in African art
A beak-shaped, curved nose, evoking the calao, extends the lower part of this African mask Dan Maou . Equipped with a beard alternating with black and blond hairs, this face that borrows the features of the portrait mask deanglé exalting beauty, hesitating between two natures, turns into a zoomorphic piece. This type of composition is recurrent in African tribal statuary. The populations Dan of the north known as Yacouba of Côte d'Ivoire and the Maou de Touba (Maouka), after borrowing them from the mandé neighbouring people, use them in secret male ceremonies including the Koma Maou and Poro des Dan society. The top of the head has crusty residues of ritual libations. Traces of controlled xylophageal attacks. For the Dan of Côte d'Ivoire, a people ...


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350.00

Masque Aduma, Duma
African art > African mask > Aduma Mask

An oval-shaped African mask, it has a slightly prominent forehead whose central ridge, enhanced with black, extends to the nose. The eyebrow arches house two thin slits for vision. A fine gash is the mouth. Dividing the forehead vertically and marking the eyelids, deep incisions recall the scarifications of the ethnic group. The sculpture was encased with a kaolin named pemba , from a clay soil found in Gabon on the banks of rivers, in savannahs or in forest quarries. In the past, human ashes were mixed. The dancer is accustomed to attributes that are supposed to give him the qualities of certain animals, such as the panther, the genette or the monkey. It has monkey hair sceptres. Grainy dry skate, abraded. The Aduma are an ethnic group established in central Gabon, in a mountainous ...


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380.00

Beet Guéré Mask
African art > African mask > Bété Mask

This imposing African mask, supposed to cause dread, is carved from dense wood and features mainly horns that meet head-on around an imposing buzzed nose and a protruding mouth highlighted with red pigments. Surmounting two openings that make up the eyes, the forehead forms an advance in flat, circular volume evoking a helmet. It is mainly in western Côte d'Ivoire that the Bété use masks related to the cult of the bagnon. The style of their dance masks was influenced by the populations Wobé and Guéré , an ensemble called Wé or "men who easily forgive ", itself belonging to the cultural group Krou , these traditions having them transmitted and taught by the Nyabwa. Of warlike origin but also involved in the resolution of conflicts, this sacred mask is worn with amulets that protect its ...


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290.00

Queen Bambara and her child
objet vendu
African art > African Statues > Queen Bambara and her child

Piece from the Cherel collection of African art.
Fertility in the spotlight in this statue of African art. Beautiful Bambara motherhood dealing with the body the agonies of time: erosion, dessications, stopped xylophage attacks, etc. These female statues named Gunadoudou were surrounded by statues depicting their servants, displaying offering cups or supporting their chests. The blacksmiths of the Dyo society used them during the ceremonies marking the end of the initiation.

This seated figure sports the distinctive hairstyle of the Bambara, a crest and two side mats, abdominal and jugular scarifications, and holds his child firmly above his prominent belly. The sculpture amazes by the contrast between the long bust and the small truncated legs.
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