African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Songye fetish
Songye fetish (N° 22812)
An imposing masked face of the kifwebe of the Bwadi ka bifwebe society wears a headdress devoid of its horn. Metal elements and a skin belt usually containing a ritual charge make up accessories with a symbolic connotation.
Slightly grainy oiled patina, erosions and cracks.
The fetish Songye, magic sculpture Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi), plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, the reduced 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 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 sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of the misfortunes that struck individuals.
Lit. : "The Sensible and the Force" ed. Royal Museum for Central Africa
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
|Material(s)||wood, metal, cuir|
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