African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > League figurines
Bwami Lega Kasangala introductory statuette (N° 13855)
Ex-Belgian tribal art collection.
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African art of Lega, Balega, or Warega, is distinguished by its introductory statuettes, also made of ivory, some of which were kept in a basket for the highest bwami officers of different communities. This type of statuette of tribal art Iginga ( Maginga plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of the Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives, and governing social life. This organization was subdivided into initiation stages, the highest being the Kindi. The statuettes were used as the aspirants were inited. Each has a particular form and meaning from which morals or dogma always flow. Thus the figures with arms raised above the head would evoke the one who settled a dispute through his arbitration. The thick legs with flexed knees are spread, giving a dynamic. The back is gnawed. The ovoid head has half-closed almond eyes in a bleached face, clean to Lega.Wood polished, clear patina nuanced. Source: "The Soul of Africa" S.Diakonoff; Art of the Lega" E.L.Cameron.
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