African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Teke statue
Teke fetish statue (N° 21608)
This figure of a clan ancestor is carried by thick arched legs surmounted by a barrel-shaped bust. The face lacks the traditional striations. The clan chief had this type of sculpture which was dipsoed on an altar.
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Velvety patina. Desiccation cracks.
Established between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Gabon, the Téké were organized into chiefdoms whose chief was often chosen from among the blacksmiths. The head of the family, mfumu , had the right of life or death over his family, whose importance determined his prestige. The head of the clan, ngantsié , for his part, kept the great protective fetish tar mantsié who supervised all the ceremonies. It was the powerful sorcerer healer and diviner who "loaded" the individual statuettes or nkumi with magical elements, in return for payment. According to the Teke, wisdom was absorbed and stored in the abdomen. It was also according to the directives that witchdoctor that worship was given to the ancestors. Their secret society, kidumu , used circular flat masks decorated with polychrome geometric patterns.
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
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