African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

Lega figure (N° 22056)

Small figure sculpted in rounded shapes and whose bust has a single arm stump. The features of the face recall those of lega masks imprinted with kaolin. Golden brown satin patina. The African art of the Lega , Balega, or even Warega , is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made in ivory, some of which were kept in a basket intended for the highest ranking Bwami of different communities. This type of Iginga ( Maginga in the plural) tribal art statuette was the property of the high ranks of the Bwami, a secret society admitting men and their wives, and governing social life. This organization was subdivided into initiatory stages, the highest being the Kindi. The role of the leader, kindi , is held by the oldest man in the clan, who must be the highest in rank. Social recognition and authority also had to be earned individually: the chief owed his selection to his heart (mutima), good character, intelligence, and impeccable behavior.

Source: "Art of the Lega" E.L.Cameron  

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Originex-collection belge
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, raphia
Height cm26
Width8 cm
Weight0.25 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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