African art > Fetish > Statue Songye

Songye Nkisi fetish statue (N° 17668)

African statue Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi ) of Songye, dressed in a raffia loincloth, it has a head encrusted with tapestry nails that, according to some authors, relate to the pox. The clan sought to protect itself from the latter through protective sculptures. The top horn that contained the magical charge bishimba or therapeutic ingredients is accessorized here with long braids in human hair. The arms are positioned around a protruding abdomen. Heterogeneous mate patina. These protective fetishes for homes are among the most popular in Africa. Nkisi plays the role of mediator between God and humans, charged with protecting against different evils. Large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, and smaller figures belong to an individual or family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. Very present in their society, divination made it possible to discover the sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of the plagues that struck individuals. (ref.: Treasures of Africa, Tervuren Museum, ed. De Vries-Brouwers)  

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Originex-collection française.
EthnySongye
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, metal, corne, human hairs
Height63
Width14
Weight4.44 Kg

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