African art > Djembe TamTam > Lamellophone Luba

Sanza figurative Luba / Zela (N° 18533)

Widespread in Central Africa, this musical instrument or sanza consists of a sound box on which parallel metal blades have been attached. The thumbs of both hands will lean on the soundboard to vibrate the anterior ends of the tabs. In Zaire, however, where all fingers are used as for the piano, groups of instruments play on complementary registers. Dark satin patina, abrasions.
The statuette, carved at the top in a round-bump, refers to notions of fertility and royal secrets. Her attitude indicates that the secrets of royalty, bizila, belong to women through their role as political and spiritual intermediaries. It is depicted wearing braids arranged in the style of shankadi. The Luba (Baluba in Tchiluba) are a people of Central Africa. Their cradle is the Katanga, specifically the region of the Lubu River, so the name (Baluba, which means the Lubas). The Luba have two types of figures: the mikisi mihasi, embodying deceased parents or spirits, and the mikisi mihake, sculptures dedicated to containing a magical charge, in the head or abdomen, in order to solve a problem.
( Luba , Roberts, 5 Continents; Treasures of Africa Ed. Tervuren Museum).

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Originex-collection Ghisolfi
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, metal
Weight1.30 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°
Socle includedYes

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