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

Tabwa Statue (N° 27408)

Sculpture of African art depicting a male ancestor whose facial and body scarifications distinguish the Batabwa clans. The subject is positioned on a circular base, shoulders and torso facing forward.
Rough brown patina, erosions and desiccation cracks.
The Tabwa ("scarify" and "write") constitute an ethnic group present in the South-East of the DRC, around Lake Tanganyika. The tribes of this region, such as the Tumbwe, worship their mipasi ancestors thanks to sculptures held by chiefs or sorcerers. A magical charge (dawa) was frequently inserted at the top of the statues' heads. The diviners-healers used this type of object to reveal witchcraft and protect against malicious spirits. Simple farmers without centralized power, the Tabwa united around tribal chiefs after having been influenced by the Luba. Animists, their beliefs are anchored around ngulu, spirits of nature present in plants and rocks.  

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Countryrdc ex zaire
Height cm45
Width15 cm
Weight1.45 Kg

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