An arched back, extended by long arms whose hands caress a triangular face. The subject with the head bristling with pimples rests on chubby, packed limbs, surmounted by the disc bordering the hips. The stylistic conventions of mambila statuary translate here into expressive sculpture. Grainy matte patina, kaolin residue and pink highlights. Cracks, chips.
Despite their small number, the thirty thousand Mambila (or Mambila, Mambere, Nor, Torbi, Lagubi, Tagbo, Tongbo, Bang, Ble, Juli, Bea)(the "men", in Fulani), settled in the northwest of Cameroon, have created a large number of masks and statues easily identifiable by their heart-shaped faces. Although the Mambila believe in a creator god named Chang or Nama, they only worship their ancestors. Their leaders were buried in granaries like wheat as they were believed to symbolize prosperity. Masks and statues were not to be seen by women.
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