African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Statue Bambara
Statue Bambara (N° 23371)
Embodying a Bambara servant, this sculpture adopts classic criteria and wears the traditional Bambara hairstyle. The protruding chest, on a plateau, accentuates the haughty bearing of the character.
Often accompanied by a " guandoudou ", figure of a queen, this type of sculpture was surrounded by figures of servants named guannyeyi during the rites of the Guan< society. /b> .
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Abraded matte patina, breaks at mat height. Cracks.
The Bambara are found in central and southern Mali. This name means "unbeliever" and was given to them by Muslims. They belong to the large Mande group, like the Soninke and the Malinke. They believe in the existence of a creator god generically called Ngala, who has 266 sacred attributes. One, for each day of the 9 lunar months that lasts the gestation of a child. Ngala maintains order in the universe. His existence coexists with another androgynous god called Faro, who gave all the qualities to men and who makes the fruits of the earth grow. Large masked parties close the initiation rites of the dyo association and the gwan ritual of the Bambara in the south of the Bambara country. Spread over a period of seven years for men, they are less demanding for women. The new initiates then celebrate, in groups, from village to village, their symbolic rebirth. It is the sons of the blacksmiths who dance around these statues that were placed outside the festivities grouped on an altar after having oiled and decorated them. Each effigy carried a message revealed to the initiates.
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