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African art - African statues : tribal fetish, maternity:

Often the work of blacksmiths who work on soft woods, African statuary includes statues of ancestors, dolls, statuettes of twins. All these statues offer geometric forms with angular contours, elongated features, sometimes with a severe expression. The arms can be glued to the body, or on the contrary, they can move away from it. We find seated or standing figures, arms and knees bent or as with the Dogon Tellem, arms raised towards the sky imploring for the coming of rain. The statues can also be used as fetishes for all sorts of animist practices, mainly in the Congo. Some are made of bronze as in the Benin kingdom. For the traditional African, their function is to make invisible realities visible.


Bariba figurine
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Bariba figurine

Statues of the Bariba (Baatonu), a group living in the Borgou region in northern Benin, are infrequent.
It is a female statue in a kneeling position, an attitude indicating devotion. The features are reminiscent of the Vinavi twin figures of the Ewe. In addition to the facial scars, carefully traced incisions on the back form geometric patterns depicting traditional scarifications.
Smooth, clear patina, resulting from frequent ritual libations composed of Shea oil and kaolin. We find a quality decoration, old glass beads.
Piece collected "in situ" in 1980 and dating from the 1970s. Desication cracks.


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Beembe statue
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Beembe statue

The Beembé are appreciated in African art for the care and finishing given to the sculptures of ancestors.
Couple of statues figured side by side. Intricate keloid tattoos are drawn in relief from the chest to the pubis. These scarifications bear witness to the successive stages of initiation to which an individual has been subjected. Sometimes set with ivory or earthenware, the almond-shaped eyes are encrusted with horn. This type of sculpture formed a support intended for the rituals of the Lemba society, with a view to healing for example. Golden satin patina, dark highlights, deep erosions.
Established on the plateaus of the People's Republic of Congo ex.Brazzaville, and not to be confused with the Bembe group of northern Lake Tanganinyika, the small Babembé group, ...


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490.00  392.00

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

Ex Belgian art collection.

This particular monoxyle piece is composed of a character whose feet are derived from a circular base keeping him in balance. At the back of the room is a large board to which the character seems tied by ties around the neck and ankles. The character is endowed with impressive and expressive facial features, in particular his fleshy open mouth revealing thick teeth. This statue could represent a convict at a judicial ceremony. In the thirteenth century, the Kongo people, led by his king Ne Kongo, settled in a region at the crossroads between the current DRC, Angola and Gabon. Two centuries later, the Portuguese came into contact with the Kongo and converted their king to Christianity. Although monarchical, the Kongo political system presented a ...


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Ibedji figures
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Ibedji figures

The Ibeji, substitute images in African art.
Traditionally carved from iroko, whose roots and leaves are also used for ritual purposes, these "ere" (statues) figures of twins are in the form of couple figures. The pieces are bound together with cowrie shells, constituting, along with metal and beads, the "abiku", protective ornaments. In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. This ibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, it is the remaining twin who takes over.
Sometimes a man would also have ibeji carved for his wife to induce pregnancy. As a carrier of the twin's ...


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Yoruba statue
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African art > Maternity, statues, bronze, wood > Yoruba statue

This sculpture of African tribal art was destined to sit on an altar. Facilitating communication with the sacred, it symbolically reminds the divinity of its duties towards men. Wearing a braided bun, she sports the keloids of Yoruba nobles, distinctive markers of Yoruba tribal statuary. Smooth gray brown patina. Desication cracks.
The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu arose following the disappearance of the Ifé civilization and are still the basis of the political structure of the Yoruba . The Oyo created two cults centered on the Egungun and Sango societies, still active, who venerate their gods, the Orisa, through ceremonies call for masks, statuettes, scepters and divination supports.

The main Yoruba cults are the Gélédé, Epa, Ogboni cults, and the Esu cult, through which a ...


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

These African statues carved according to Yaka formal standards, were made following the instructions of the Nganga ngoombu and the sponsor of the object. This statue is distinguished by the quality of its balanced structure and by its face reproducing the masks of the group, equipped with an identifiable trumpet nose. Glossy black-garnet patina. Desication cracks, abrasions.

Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are nowadays an opportunity for the Yaka to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals using charms linked to the "khosi" institution. The youth initiation society is the n-khanda, which is found ...


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250.00

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

This type of female African figure, among the Luba, was often linked to fecundity and fertility rituals. The posture would further indicate that the secrets of royalty, bizila, belong to the women at the Luba court through their role as political and spiritual intermediaries. The female figurative subjects would represent for the Lubas the wife of the diviner, hence its importance in the process of bilumbu divination. According to some Lubas, however, although a woman, she would represent the first Luba diviner, and would also be an allegory of royalty linked to the powerful Mbudye society associated with royal power. ("Luba" Roberts.) Beautiful satin patina, erosions and gaps.
The Luba (Baluba in Chiluba) are a people of Central Africa. Their cradle is Katanga, more precisely ...


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240.00  192.00

Kouyou statue
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Kouyou statue

African puppet emblematic of the Kouyou type, intended for the dance kibe-kibe, or Ebokita (S.Diakonoff) this sculpture refers to the ancestor mythical Oso. The face bears scarified patterns, and the mouth reveals sharp teeth.
Polychrome satin patina. Erosions and cracks.
Formerly, the Kouyou were divided into two totemic clans: in the West that of the panther, and in the East that of the snake. A secret men's association, Ottoté, played an important political role in the appointment of chiefs. The initiation of young people ended with the revelation of the serpent god Ebongo represented in the form of a head. The Kibe-kibe or Kebekebe dances, which accompanied the ceremony, reactivated the successive stages of creation. The panther clan had a drum as their emblem. ...


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290.00  232.00

Niongom statue
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Niongom statue

Named "Nommo shicouroulé" by the Niongom, this type of figure marrying the natural shape of a branch would embody the primordial man created by the god Ama, supposed to inspire the religious leader Hogon. The inclined bust, long hands flattened on the thighs, the character offers his profile. Continuous dotted linear facial and body scarifications extend onto the cup and the small dome on which the figure is perched.
Velvety matte patina, locally abraded blackish coating. Small erosions.
Carved for the most part to order placed by a family and in this case placed on the family altar Tiré Kabou, the Dogon tribal statues can also be the object of cults of the part of the whole community when they commemorate, for example, the foundation of the village. These statues, sometimes ...


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Great Statue Kouyou
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Great Statue Kouyou

Kouyou terracotta statues are distinguished in African art by the bright colors with which their patina is adorned.
We find figures sitting or standing as is the case here, arms always along the body. The head is almost spherical and very expressive, the eyes drooping and the mouth open. Curved polychrome motifs decorate the whole piece.

In the past, the Kuyu were divided into two totemic clans: the panther clan in the west and the snake clan in the east.
A secret men's association, Ottoté, played an important political role in the appointment of the chiefs.
The initiation of the young men ended with the revelation of the serpent god Ebongo represented in the form of a head.
The dances that accompanied the ceremony reactivated the successive stages ...


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Biga doll
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African art > African Dolls > Biga doll

This schematized anthropomorphic figure, whose appearance of the head varies according to the regions, represents a spirit with which a relationship is established. The columnar bust bears sagging breasts, an attribute of fertility and a symbol of maternity. The stylized head evokes the female crest hairstyle, with a braid falling in front of the face for young girls, the parallel patterns the scarifications.
Glossy patina of use.
Upper Volta, Burkina Faso since independence, is made up of the descendants of the invaders, horsemen who came from Ghana in the 15th century, named Nakomse, and the Tengabibisi, descendants natives. Political power is in the hands of the Nakomsé, who assert their power through statues, while the priests and religious leaders are from the ...


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190.00  152.00

Yoruba Statuette
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yoruba Statuette

Ibeji, substitute images in African art.
Traditionally carved from iroko, the roots and leaves of which are also used for ritual purposes, this twin 'ere' (statue) figure wears metal adornments. Semi-satin mahogany patina. Desication crack.
In the language of the Yoruba people, ibeji means twin: ibi for born and eji for two. They represent the figure of a deceased twin. Thisibedji is then treated as the missing child would have been. It is the mother who must take care of him; she can wash and feed him regularly. If she dies, the remaining twin takes over. It also happened that a man had ibeji carved for his wife in order to induce pregnancy. Support for the soul of the twin, the ibeji influences the life of the family, becoming a source of benefits for his parents, the ...


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Nyamwezi Figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Nyamwezi Figure

Statuette offering an inclined female bust, which the arms enclose, and disproportionate legs. The amplitude of the ears stands out alongside the blind face. This type of statue, among the wide variety of tribal production in this region, participated in the worship of ancestors, and some played a role in traditional dowsing activities. Black greasy patina, grainy residue. Abrasions, tiny lacks. br> The Nyamwézi are made up of tribes of diverse origins making up the largest group in central Tanzania, yet sharing the same cultural traits. They were involved in the 19th century in the caravan trade that crossed their Unyamwézi territory. They were therefore led to travel from the Congo (R.D.C.) to the coastal cities of the Indian Ocean, where they were called "Nyamwézi", "men of the ...


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Luluwa figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Luluwa figure

The different types of Luluwa, Lulua, or Béna Lulua statues, with multiple scarifications, glorify local chiefs, motherhood, fertility and the female figure. Female figures of this type belong to the Buanga bua cibola cult, and are supposed, according to the Lulua, to protect children and pregnant women. Indeed, by the position of the hands, this figure highlights a prominent abdomen, center of the body and "object of all solicitude" (The Power of the Sacred, M. Faïk-Nzuji ) Golden brown patina. Desication cracks. It is in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo that the Lulua, or Béna Lulua, from West Africa settled. . Their social structure, based on caste, is similar to that of the Luba. They produced few masks, but mostly statuettes of ancestors representing the ideal warrior, ...


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280.00  224.00

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

The spectacular elongation of the bust here forms like a stick supported by curved lower limbs. The head, for its part, refers to the masks of the style qualified as guro-bete for lack of reliable information. The central part, cleared up, would indicate a frequent prehension. Satin garnet black patina.
of the Baoulé. Their respective sculptures, by their morphology, bear witness to their close relationship. Priest and diviner share the predominant ritual functions among the Guro. Secret associations worship the geniuses of nature, through the masks in which the spirits are supposed to reside. Their protective spirits called zuzu were worshiped through statues placed on altars. The Bété form a tribe established on the left bank of the Sassandra River in the south-west of the Ivory ...


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390.00  312.00

Yaka figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yaka figure

These primitive African statues providing protection against enemies were made according to the instructions of the Nganga ngoombu and the sponsor of the object. This powerful tribal art object was then activated using rituals and incantatory formulas. Very unusual thanks to its expressive physiognomy, its joined hands indicating the confession of a fault, its base formed of contiguous webbed feet, this yaka statue also stands out for its structure.
Smooth golden brown patina.

Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are nowadays an opportunity for the Yaka to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals ...


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Songye fetish
African art > The fetish, this emblematic object of primitive art > Songye fetish

Statuette Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi) at the top of which a horn has been inserted by the point. The power of the fetish, according to the beliefs of the Songye, would be reinforced by the presence of its accessories, metal and, or, various additions of materials, vegetable fibers, animal skins, dried fruits, etc... Beautiful abraded light brown patina.< br /> These protective fetishes for homes are among the most popular in Africa. The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens are the collective property of 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 on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their ...


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160.00

Nyamwezi statue
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Nyamwezi statue

African sculpture in figurative style. Sober and devoid of ornaments, this sculpture depicts a rectilinear character, arms outstretched from the bust. The haughty head, distinguished by the breadth of the ears, is carried by a long neck. Brown satin patina.
The Nyamwezi, Nyamézi, form the largest group among the tribes living in north central Tanzania. Coming from diverse origins, although sharing the same cultural specificities, their ritual and artistic production consequently presents very different formal aspects. The cult of ancestors and chiefs, of major importance within their culture, marked their statuary.
The Sukuma and the Nyamézi produced statues represented in a static position, some of which, with filiform limbs, evoke the artistic creations of Alberto ...


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200.00

"Colon" Baule
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > "Colon" Baule

This African sculpture of a young man adopts some of the canons of the statues baule, known as "colonists". It is, however, a blolo bian figure, associated with the spouse of the afterlife. Polychrome patina. Abrasions. br> Some sixty ethnic groups populate Côte d'Ivoire, including the Baule, in the center, Akans from Ghana, people of the savannah, practicing hunting and agriculture just like the Gouro from whom they borrowed ritual cults and sculpted masks. Two types of statues are produced by the Baoulé, Baulé, within the ritual framework: The Waka-Sona statues, "being of wood" in Baoulé, evoke an assié oussou, being of the earth. They are part of a type of statues intended to be used as a medium tool by the komien diviners, the latter being selected by the asye usu spirits ...


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160.00

Idoma mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Idoma mask

The African masks worn as crests are varied among the Idoma, such as this figured mask topped with mats, some of which rise in volutes at the top. Linear scarifications in bars adorn the face, the black-tinted mouth opens wide on metal teeth. The headdress is said to be named ochobo and is related to the osobo dance. The head formed the upper part of a crest mask of the same type as ungulali masks.
Two-tone matte patina, grainy residue.
The Idoma live at the confluence of the Bénué and the Niger. Numbering 500,000, they are farmers and traders. There are Igbo, Cross River and Igala influences in their art and customs and it is often difficult to distinguish them from their neighbours. Okua masks are worn among the southern Idoma at funerals of important people and feature ...


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Pende Figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Pende Figure

Statuette featuring a dancer from the Pende Minganji masquerade from Zaire, wearing his full raffia fishnet costume. Léon de Sousberghe identified two types of masks, the minganji associated with male society and the mbuya masks associated with the village, with a few exceptions.
The Western Pende live on the banks of the Kwilu, while the Eastern settled on the banks of the Kasaï downstream from Tshikapa. The influences of neighboring ethnic groups, Mbla, Suku, Wongo, Leele, Kuba and Salempasu imprinted on their large tribal art sculpture. Within this diversity, the Mbuya masks, realistic, produced every ten years, take on a festive function, and embody different characters, including the chief, the diviner and his wife, the prostitute, the possessed, etc... The masks of ...


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