African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Luba Statue

Luba Statue (N° 27510)

This feminine African figure presents the "mboko" cup, a gourd that was filled with kaolin, symbolizing purity and the spiritual world. These containers were used by different Luba societies, more generally by the mediums of the Kilumbu, Bilumbu divination society,  or by the healers of the Buhabo society. i>. The Mbudye diviners also used it. The faces of these characters embodying the tutelary spirits manifest a peaceful interiority. According to P. Nooter, these figures also represented the diviner's wife,  which underlines her importance in the process of bilumbu divination. According to some Luba, however, although a woman, she represents the first Luba diviner, and is also an allegory of royalty linked to the powerful society of Mbudye associated with power. royal.
("Luba" Roberts; "Luba", F.Neyt.) Shiny black patina. Desiccation cracks, alterations, gaps.

The Luba (Baluba in Chiluba) are a people of Central Africa. Their cradle is Katanga, more precisely the region of the Lubu river, thus the name (Baluba, which means “the Lubas”). They were born from a secession of the Songhoy ethnic group, under the leadership of Ilunga Kalala who put to death the old king Kongolo, since venerated in the form of a python. In the 16th century they created a state, organized into decentralized chieftaincy, which extended from the Kasai River to Lake Tanganyika. The chiefdoms cover a small territory without any real border which brings together at most three villages.
However, the different chiefdoms are linked by trade. The notable figures of this Luba monarchy are the kings Kongolo, Kalala Ilunga (16th century) and the successors Kasongo Nyembo and Kabongo. The Balubas often split giving birth to the Bena-Lulua and the Lunda. Thus Mwata Yamvo, Lunda emperor, was born of a Luba father, and Moïse Tshombe, one of these descendants, is therefore also of Luba origin. In the 19th century the lubas were unable to face the attacks of the Tchokwe, Lélés and Yékés. Previously, the Balubas venerated their dead ancestors residing in heaven and having to protect them.  

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OriginEx-collection française FLB
EthnyLuba
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood
Height cm45
Depth22 cm
Width14 cm
Weight1.60 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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