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

Mamy Wata statue of Guinea (N° 14916)

Mermaid figures in African art

The cult of Mami Wata, a female genius associated with the sea, spread from Ghana and throughout West Africa. This type of sculpture, born in the 1930s, is called Yombofisa, Signal or Tiyambo in the Sitem. Yombofisa, according to David Berliner, is distinguished by a braided hairstyle adhering to the skull, and a mermaid body. Also known Yobo-fissa among the Baga Forè, it embodies the goddess of beauty and water, protecting fishermen and their villages. Known in the various groups Baga ("Tambaningo" among the Landuma), she also appears in masks during traditional and festive ceremonies. Glossy patina, golden brown with khaki highlights. Desication cracks and xylophageal damage. Missing object in one of the hands.
Mixed with Nalu and Landuman, Baga live along the coast of Guinea-Bissau in flooded swamp regions six months a year. These Baga groups, based on the coast and living from rice farming, are made up of seven subgroups, including Baga Kalum, Bulongic, Baga sitem, Baga Mandori, etc. They believe in a creative god called Nagu, Naku , which they do not represent, and which is accompanied by a male spirit whose name is Somtup . Apart from the famous Nimba mask, they have created a powerful mask, hybrid of snake, gazelle, chameleon and crocodile, in order to communicate with the spirits of the forest. After the abandonment of rites following Islamization, colonization, or conversions to Christianity, the Baga now seek to revive their traditions through festive ceremonies using masks.
Ref. :U.0022Baga" D.Berliner  

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380.00 € 304.00 ( -20.0 %) 
Possibility of payment in2x (2x 152.0 €)

This item is sold with its certificate of authenticity

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Originex-collection française
Weight2.50 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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