African art > Bronze rider, wooden rider, dogon, yoruba > Bronze Sao

Cavalier Sao Kotoko Putchu Guinadji (N° 17933)

Used as an amulet credited with apotropaic virtues, this small bronze sculpture is, for the Sao, a talisman supposed to protect them from madness. It is therefore worn at all times. The genius who would possess the madman is represented by the rider, the horse depicting the victim. The rider wearing a cheche rides an equine that was a rare prestige attribute in these sahel regions. Golden brown patina.
The Sao, ancestors of the Kotoko, were established between the 12th and 14th centuries in a geographical area extending along the borders between Chad, northern Cameroon and Nigeria. They settled on hills, which allowed them to repel the invaders. Subjected to successive onslaughts from their Kanem neighbours and then to hordes from the east, the Sao had to abandon their lands to settle in northwestern Cameroon where they mixed with the natives giving birth to an ethnic group called Kotoko. Lost wax cast iron was already commonly practiced as early as the 12th century by this African ethnic group, which mainly produced copper alloy jewellery among prestigious objects. The Kotoko still attribute to copper metal a mythical origin giving it a protective value. Source: Horse and rider in the art of black African G. Massa, ed. Sepia


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Originex-collection française
Material(s)bronze africain
Weight0.30 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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