African art > Statues > Statue Chamba
Statuette Chamba (N° 13517)
Ex-Belgian African art collection.
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An exceptionally soft and lustrous patina enhances this tribal statuette of the Chamba. A high ridge rises obliquely at the top of an ovoid head whose incisions mark the eyes and mouth, notches, ears, and a bulge, nasal ridge. Its particularity lies also in its long ringed neck. The hands-free arms seem to lean on the rectangle space that makes up the hips, giving it a semblance of dress. This pretty piece was polished and sained by gripping. Slight cracks. Settled since the 17th century on the south bank of the Benue River in Nigeria, the Chamba have resisted attempts to conquer the Fulani, nomads who settled in large numbers in northern Nigeria. They are known for their famous buffalo mask with its two flat jaws extending the head. The less frequent statuary is divided into protective figures (tauwa, sing. tau) which are kept in a box to the left of the entrance of the concession, and in statues of ancestors, kona.
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