African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Songye figure

Songye/Hemba Janiform Fetish (N° 20509)

The unusual character of this sculpture comes from details such as the size of the feet and the double face in relation to the kifwebe mask of the Bwadi ka bifwebe society. No other element, metal, beads, or seeds, accessorize the fetish.
Dark brown satin patina.
The fetish Songye , magical sculpture Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi ) , plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens are the collective property of a whole village, while the smaller figures belong to an individual or a family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle in Kasai, Katanga and South Kivu. Their society is organized in a patriarchal manner. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. Divination is very present in their society and allowed them to discover sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of misfortunes that struck individuals. Litt. Le Sensible et la Force" ed. Royal Museum of Central Africa  

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OriginEx-collection française
Countryrdc ex zaire
Weight0.75 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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