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

Songye Nkisi fetish statuette (N° 21263)

Wrapped in fragments of cloth that are held together by cords, this African statuette Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi )features an interesting stylized head. The features are indeed reminiscent of traditional bifwebe masks. Satin patina. Cracks.
These protective fetishes for homes are among the most prized in Africa. The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The larger examples are collectively owned by an entire village, while the smaller figures belong to an individual or family. In the sixteenth century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba River. 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. The Songyes have created impressive statues with powerful features that are often used during secret ceremonies, covered with accessories such as feathers, skin and a horn full of magical charge.
Very present in their society, the divination allowed to discover the sorcerers and to bring clarifications on the causes of the misfortunes which struck the individuals.  

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290.00 
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OriginCollection P. Malisse
EthnySongye
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, textile, plant fibre
Height22
Width7
Weight0.20 Kg

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