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

Songye fetish figure (N° 20485)

A reduced reproduction of the kifwebe mask related to the Bwadi ka bifwebe society composes the face of the anthropomorphic fetish here opposite. The latter was carved in a dense wood in geometric volumes. The symbolic and magical ritual accessories are presented here in the form of a necklace of blue beads. Light brown patina.
The fetish Songye, magical sculpture Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi ), plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The larger specimens are collectively owned by an entire village, while the smaller figures belong to an individual or a family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle in Kasai, Katanga and South Kivu. Their society is organized in a patriarchal manner. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. Divination is very present in their society and allowed them to discover sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of misfortunes that struck individuals. Litt. Le Sensible et la Force" ed. Royal Museum of Central Africa  

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OriginEx-collection Timmerman
EthnySongye
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, perles
Height32
Width11
Weight1.35 Kg
Estimated dating2ème halfxx°

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