African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Beembe fetish

Beembe fetish (N° 21693)

Beembe are valued in African art for the care and finishing touches given to sculptures of ancestors intended for fertility and healing rituals. Naturalist male figure, fetish for individual use loaded with the bilongo, heap of magical or therapeutic ingredients. Sometimes set with ivory or earthenware, the almond-shaped eyes are inlaid with a light wood.
Polished golden brown surface.
Black wood base in "associated product". Established on the plateaus of the People's Republic of Congo ex.Brazzaville, and not to be confused with the Bembe group from the north of Lake Tanganinyika, the small Babembe group, Béembé, was influenced by the rites and culture of the Téké, but especially by that of the Kongo. The Béembé originally formed the Kongo kingdom, along with the Vili, Yombé, Bwendé and Woyo. The head of the village, nga-bula, was responsible for interceding with the ancestors. Hunting being a major activity, the ancestors were invoked through statuettes. These idealized representations of ancestors, kitebi or bimbi consecrated by the sorcerer, bore attributes of hunters or even healers. Some of them, as among the Bakongo, were magical objects minkisi with nails and which were equipped with orifices into which medicines, bilongo , or relics of ancestors, were introduced.  

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OriginEx collection suisse
CountryCongo Brazzaville
Material(s)wood, metal, amas argileux, resin
Height cm18
Width10 cm
Weight0.40 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°
Socle inclusOptional

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