Belgian African art collection.
Effigy of an asexual ancestor, whose hands rest on the lower abdomen. In African tribal art, this type of sculpture associated with individual worship adorned the Dogon family altar. Grainy ritual patina.
Carved mostly on commission by a family, the Dogon statues may also be the object of worship by the entire community. Their functions, however, remain little known.
Alongside Islam, Dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lebe, relating to fertility, under the spiritual authority of the Hogon; the Wagem, ancestor worship under the authority of the patriarch; the Binou invoking the spirit world and led by the Binou priest; and the mask society concerning funerals.
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