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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.

Fang Hybrid Mask of So o
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African art > African mask > Fang mask

It was during the initiation of the young men at the Fang and Ntumu of southern Cameroon, during the ceremonies of the so or red antelope, that this anthropomorphous African mask with horns was exhibited. The gaze formed of two thin horizontal slits sheltered under the frontal space colored with red, the grimace of the mouth revealing incisions representing the teeth, the contrast of colors, livid and sanguine, were not lacking, during the nocturnal appearances of the mask Fang to provoke some emotion among the initiates. Cracking of the wood on the jugal area. The Fang, formerly named Pahouins, are divided into several sub-groups in three countries, Cameroon, Gabon, and the mainland of Equatorial Guinea. Mainly hunters, they also practice agriculture. Their social cohesion rests on the ...

Benin court dwarf in bronze
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African art > African Statues > Benin Statue

Simply dressed, the character with rounded volumes offers an imposing head with protruding cheekbones in which the sunken eyes could indicate blindness. The folded arms with clenched fists give the silhouette an idea of movement and vigour. The legs are proportionally reduced. Beautiful spotted patina, golden reflections. In African art, Benin art is described as court art because it is closely associated with the king, known as Oba.
The dwarves of the king's entourage, which appeared in the 15th century, were intended not only for diversion, but also for surveillance. They were given occult gifts. According to Fagg, these characters were also acrobats and illusionists. Their bronze figures were to garnish the altars of the ancestors.

Before the destruction of the palace ...

Statue of Theose Senoufo
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African art > African Statues > Statue Senoufo

With a crest evoking a stylized animal figure, this slender male sculpture offers graceful limbs widening at the hands. They lie on both sides of the basin. The barely bent legs disappear into a pilon-forming base, called sedine or dol according to the dialect. Black glossy patina. Desication cracks.
The Senoufos , a name given to them by French settlers, are mainly 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 of seven into a succession of three cycles lasting seven years. Figurative ...


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Statue of Congo Vili Nkondi Nkisi
African art > African Statues > Statue of Congo

The statuary of African tribal art Kongo is illustrated by different expressive postures. The gesture against would reflect a warlike and aggressive attitude, confirmed by the presence of multiple nails with apotropic but also offensive aims. The elements bilongo conferring additional powers on this statue are placed in the abdominal cavity that is obstructed by a mirror. The dagger is also missing. The face of the Nkondi reflects an aggressiveness reinforced by the open mouth and the large dark pupils.
Shez the Kongo, nganga se charged rituals by activating a spiritual force with a nkondi (pl. nkissi). The term nkisi was then used to refer to the terms of 'sacred' or 'divine'. The most influential category of 'minkisi kongo' consisted of instruments to help regional leaders enforce ...


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650.00

Dogon pharmacopoeia box
African art > Usual african items > Dogon Box

Decorated with bas-relief motifs, this African art sculpture, a box with two moving shutters, set on three feet, was probably designed to preserve active medicinal preparations prepared according to the advice of elders who had been introduced to the science of trees or . jiridon. The figures of 'nommos', primordial ancestors, and animal symbols are supposed to activate the healing power of the actives. Light brown patina.
The Dogons are a people renowned for their cosmogony, their esotericism, their myths and legends. 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). Villages are often perched atop scree at the hillside, ...


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250.00

Cavalier Sao Sokoto Putchu Guinadji
African art > African Rider > Horseman Sao

This bronze has a copper patina. The warrior depicted on his mount has his head wrapped in a choir identical to those of the Tuareg.

In African art, The Works of Sao Sokoto Inspiration are mostly imprinted with the equestrian world. Within the ethnic group, small specimens of riders usually in bronze are melted and worn like talismans, patinated and lustrous by friction. They are seen above all as a remedy to fight possession by evil spirits. The horse represents the spirit of the person who is possessed, while the genius who possesses it is symbolized by the rider. Subjected to the successive onslaughts of their neighbours in Kanem and then to hordes from the east, the Sao had to abandon their lands to settle in northwestern Cameroon where they mixed with the natives giving ...


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125.00

Luvale / Chokwe Mask
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African art > African mask > Chokwe Mask

Originally from Lunda, the Lwena emigrated from Angola to Zaire in the 19th century, repelled by the Chokwe. When some became slave traders, other groups found refuge in Zambia, forming the Luvale, Lovale. Their society is matrilineal, exogamous and polygamous. The Lwena and Luvale became known for their sculptures embodying figures of deceased ancestors and chiefs, and their masks related to the initiation rites of the mukanda, a secret male association shared by all these groups in the same territory, with some variations, however. Their sculpture was largely influenced by that of the Chokwe. The masks of the Chokwe, Luda, Luvale/Lwena, Luchazi and Mbunda clans are named in Zambia as 'makishi' (sing. likishi). This name comes from 'kishi', a Bantu concept that evokes the manifestation ...


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Kasai Shoowa Velvet
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African art > African Textile > Textile Cuba

Belgian African tribal art collection.
African art and the refinement of Kuba weaving.
Products to Zaire by the Shoowa, Bashoowa, a subgroup Kuba , these fabrics forming real paintings of first art, consist of a textile base in raffia on which threads are cut to the brim, forming a velvet effect accentuated by the contrasts of tone. The geometric patterns formed represent the body 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. In many cases they took the value of money, or they also followed their owners into the grave by covering the body of the deceased. It was King Shamba Bolongongo who introduced the velvet weaving technique to Kuba ...


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Bwami Lega Mask
African art > African mask > Masque League

This mask is used during the initiation rites of the Bwami society. It is open to men and women. The passage of a rank indicated the acquisition of a certain individual wisdom and morality. Dark brown patina abraded. Kaolin residue.
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 palisades, usually on the top of hills. The role of the leader, kindi, is held by the oldest man of the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, men hunt ...


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380.00

Iginga League figurines
African art > African Statues > League figurines

This figure features a characteristic face of the Lega sculptures, combined with the morphology of the hanged man typical of Mbole productions called okifa, symbolizing victims sacrificed or punished by the Lilwa society. Abraded satin patina.
The tribal 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 for the highest ranks of the Bwami of different communities. This type of tribal art statuette Iginga ( Maginga in the plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of the Bwami, a secret society that admits men and their wives, and governs social life. This organization was subdivided into initiation stages, the highest being the Kindi. The statuettes were used as the aspirants were ...


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180.00

Kumu Shield, Komo
African art > African mask > Komo Shield

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Masque flat with a handle, it is divided into two contrasting colours. Velvety mate patina. African masks nsembu, embodying the spirit of divination, usually appear in pairs during the rituals of the nkunda society, babankunda. The Kumu, Bakumu, Komo, live mainly in the North-East and central 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 has great similarities with that of the Metoko and Lengola. Their divination masks were displayed during the closing ceremonies of the initiation and circumcision of the young people of the society nkunda . It was in the Maniema region around the Lualaba River and the ...


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280.00

Masque Dan Gunye ge
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African art > African mask > Ivory Coast Mask

Among the variation of the African masks of Côte d'Ivoire, the so-called "mask of race"
For the Dan, or Yacouba, living in western Côte d'Ivoire and Liberia, the Force U-002d-" that would animate the world would manifest itself in carved masks. This is how she seeks to bring knowledge to man in order to support him, and uses the channel of dreams beforehand. The spirits then indicate how to name the mask they wish to see made. These masks of different types are endowed with functions, social, spiritual and political, often evolving over time. Masks equipped with round orbits (gunye ge), facilitating vision, are part of all the masks of the northern Dan and are used for racing events during the dry season. The zapkei ge , also equipped with circular orbits, are responsible for ...


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Markha, Warka mask
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African art > African mask > Markha Mask

This African mask with a face has a pointed jaw. The nasal ridge, rectangular, dominates a small protruding mouth. The ears and crest are embellished with beads attached to cotton fiber pompoms. The side stair motifs feature the braids of traditional hairstyles. Metal sheets, incised with parallel strokes and hammered with dotted lines, the specificity of the sculptures marka, follow the volumes of the face.
Spotted and dull, velvety. Oxidized metal.
In African art, the Marka , Maraka en Bamana, Warka, or Sarakolé, are Muslim city dwellers of Soninke origin, settled in southern Niger, scattered since the end of the Ghana Empire in Mali, Mauritania and Senegal. They now speak bamana and have adopted much of the Bambara traditions, such as Ntomo and Koré , initiation societies ...


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Gong ritual Fang
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African art > Usual african items > Fang Bell

Cult accessories, metal alloy gongs, some highly decorated, take on a wide variety of shapes. A sacred instrument, this object is topped with a handle that features a reliquary head of the byeri, featuring a helmet hairstyle with a long braid in the neck. The tinkling of wooden chopsticks on hollow metal heralded the beginning of ceremonies: communication with the supernatural world, ancestors, deities, could be established. Also objects of prestige, they accompanied the respect due to the chefs. Wicker strips are wrapped around the section of the neck. Glossy mahogany brown patina on the face, crusty patina locally flaked on the gong.


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Kongo/Vili Nkisi fetish statuette
African art > African Statues > Vili Fetish

The statuette with a bulbous abdomen containing a magic charge could be included in the category of therapeutic fetishes. The amalgam or bilongo introduced consisted of various ingredients from the natural environment including red clay, red wood powder tukula, white clay pembe... , but possibly human fragments such as teeth, nails, hair. This fetish of conspiracy was supposed to influence the health, prosperity, enemies of its holder. Among the Kongo, the specialist named nganga , took charge of the rituals by activating a spiritual force with a nkondi (pl. nkissi). The term nkisi was then used to refer to the terms 'sacred' or 'divine'.
The Vili, the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembé, the Bwende, the Yombé and the Kôngo were the Kôngo group, led by king ntotela. Their kingdom ...


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240.00

Piley statue of millet Dogon Tintam
African art > African Statues > Dogon statue

An ancestor figure illustrating one of the daily tasks of this people of the cliffs. At the neck, a korte necklace made up of amulets incorporating verses from the Qur'an testifies to the Muslim influence in the region. The surface was rubbed with ochre, probably for ritual purposes. This sculpture presents a matte wood, dessiquered and furrowed, pigmented with clay residues.
The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, their esotericism, their myths and legends. 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). Villages are often perched atop scree at the hillside, according to a unique architecture. The history of ...


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490.00

Yaure Lomane Mask
African art > African mask > Yohoure Mask

A subgroup of the Akan people present in Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana, the Yaouré have produced a sculptural art influenced by the neighbouring Baoulé and Gouros ethnic groups, and vice versa. This African mask belonging to the je society is topped by a stage featuring two ibis drinking face to face. The hair is organized into braids while a collar engraved with triangular patterns borders the face. Polychrome discreet Vivid polychrome laquising, partialmet abrased.
This example, 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 to the touch for a purifying purpose. He also appears at the moment in the course of rejoicing. . African art masks Yaouré , or Yauré , whose Baoulé ...


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380.00

Masque facial Markha
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African art > African mask > Markha Mask

A narrow face where the nasal ridge overcomes a thin protruding mouth, a pointed jaw, this sculpture marked with brass leaves is a specificity of the sculptures marka. Slightly speckled matte patina.
In African art, the Marka , Maraka en Bamana, Warka, or Sarakolé, are Muslim city dwellers of Soninke origin, settled in southern Niger, scattered since the end of the Ghana Empire in Mali, Mauritania and Senegal. They now speak bamana and have adopted much of the Bambara traditions, such as Ntomo and Koré , initiation societies that used masks during their ceremonies. The sculptors of African art Bambara and Marka are part of the Numuw , who are not related to an ethnic group and are free to establish themselves wherever they want.


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Lega Water Pipe
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African art > Usual african items > Pipe League

This lega water pipe consists of a gourd decorated with faces, cauris and peeled seeds. Its mouthpiece is wrapped in necklaces of glass beads. The object is topped with anthropomorphic bone-patterned tips.
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 for the highest ranks of the Bwami of different communities. This type of tribal art statuette Iginga (Maginga in plural), was the property of the high-ranking 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 ...


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Large bedu Nafana mask
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African art > African mask > Nafana Mask

This flat African mask, always topped with a disc or arched horns, offers geometric surfaces whose vegetable coating reduces polychromy. In the form of an abstract sculpture, he possessed the peculiarity of performing as a couple. Three orifices have been set up for the dancer's vision. Symbols of abundance and fertility, these masks of Nafana origin (northeastern Côte d'Ivoire and northwestern Ghana) were released during ceremonies related to the agrarian rites zaurau. The cult Bedu according to Bravmann, in a village nafana and spread to Kulango and Mandish-speaking communities such as the Hwéla. This new type of masks appeared around 1930 following the prohibition by the colonial authorities of large flat masks linked to a secret society that was supposed to fight witchcraft and ...


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Masque Lega Kwame
African art > African mask > Kweme Mask

Lega primitive sculptures in African art. Mask used by Kwame , Kweme , a Lega subgroup living in North Kivu province with similar societies and rites. With asymmetrical eyes, it also has a mouth with bulging contours, punctures in the ears, and a dotted decoration. The double border on the face is very unusual. It indicated the stage reached within the Bwami, a learning society composed of different ranks, and joined by the wives whose spouses had reached the third level, that of the ngandu. Locally abraded glossy patina. H. on pedestal: 42 cm.

Belle patina nuanced golden brown. Residual kaolin inlays.

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 ...


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350.00





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