African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Yaka figure
Yaka Yiteke fetish (N° 20090)
These tribal statues, ritual charms belonging to lineages and providing protection against enemies, were made according to the instructions of the Nganga ngoombu and the object's patron.
These African sculptures were then activated with rituals and incantatory formulas, and additions in the form of talismans or medicinal substances.
The headdress is that of the earth chiefs, the nose has a characteristic snub nose shape. These sculptures were often hung in the huts. Matt patina, pinkish ochre highlights.
Hierarchical and authoritarian, composed of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage chiefs who had the right of life and death over their subjects. The hunt and the prestige that comes with it are the occasion today for the Yaka to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals using charms linked to the "khosi" institution. The youth initiation society is the n-khanda, which is found among the Eastern Kongo (Chokwe, Luba, etc...),and which employs various charms and masks with the aim of ensuring a vigorous lineage. The Suku and Yaka ethnic groups, very close geographically, have the same social and political structure as well as similar cultural practices. They can only be differentiated by their stylistic variations.
Ref: C.M.Faïk-Nzuji, "La puissance du Sacré"; "Trésors d'Afrique" ed. Musée de Tervuren; "Yaka", Ed. 5Continents.
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
|Material(s)||wood, plumes, textile, plant fibre|
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