African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Songye Fetish
Statue Nkishi Songye Kalebwe (N° 18629)
This sculpture with angular shapes is the result of cooperation between the nganga, the craftsman and the client. Treated according to the instructions of the ritual priest, the figure intended for the client is then loaded with the elements bishimba intended to counter any evil force. In the case of the çi-contre fetish, the hollowed abdomen is devoid of it. The face is studded with upholstery nails. In African culture, metal has magical, therapeutic and apotropaic properties. The face that adopts the features of a middle-aged man recalls both the kifwebe mask. Satin black brown patina.
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The fetish Songye , magical sculpture Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi ), plays the role of mediator between gods and men. Large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, while smaller figures belong to an individual or family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to 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 the sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of the misfortunes that afflicted individuals.
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
|Material(s)||wood, metal, corne animale|
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