African art > Head rest > Yaka neck support

Yaka neck support (N° 23515)

This type of neckrest, named musaw or m-baambu, is part of the objects of African tribal art integrating the ritual charms of the leaders of matrilineage and heads of families. The latter, who kept them in their bedrooms, sought to preserve their sophisticated tribal headdresses.
Some of these sculptures had magical charges inserted in discreet cavities.
Black satin patina.
Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are nowadays an opportunity 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 uses various charms and masks for the purpose to ensure a vigorous lineage. Dedicating a special cult to twins, the Bayaka (Sing. Yaka) also use janiform statues named yikubu linked to the rites common to boys and girls. (C.M.Faïk-Nzuji, "The Power of the Sacred" ; "Yaka", A.P.Bourgeois, ed.5continents)  

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OriginEx-collection française
EthnyYaka
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood
Height cm14
Depth10 cm
Width19 cm
Weight0.58 Kg
Estimated datingcirca 1960

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