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African art - Lega:

Among the Lega, the Bwami society, open to men and women, organised social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, they live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on hilltops. The role of chief, kindi, is held by the oldest man in the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, the men hunt and clear land while the women cultivate cassava.


Lega Bwami figure of initiation
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

Sculpture relating to a proverb only known to initiates, this human figure has an erect arm and a stump. This attitude generally symbolizes the appeasement of a quarrel through the arbitration of an individual.
Clear abraded patina.
Desiccation cracks.
The tribal art of the Lega , Balega, or even Warega, is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, some of which were kept in a basket intended for the highest ranking officers of the Bwami from different communities. This type of Iginga tribal art statuette ( Maginga in the plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives, and governing social life. This organization was subdivided into initiatory stages, the highest being the ...


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190.00

Lega monkey mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask


Mask offering the physiognomy of a primate. Kaolin residues. This sculpted work indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, a learning society made up of different ranks, and which were joined by the wives whose husbands had reached the third level, that of ngandu . Height including beard: 48 cm. Within the Léga, the Bwami society, open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven initiation levels, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in DRC. During ritual ceremonies, Idumu masks were presented to initiates placed on a barrier and surrounded by smaller masks. The teacher guided the aspirant to a place where ...


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380.00

Lega Idimu Mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega Mask

Spherical mask notched with horizontal eye sockets and a short, upturned-tipped nose. The circular pupils and the incised mouth compose the most elementary features.
Grainy matte patina.
Within the Léga, the Bwami society, open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda during the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also called Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on top of hills. The role of chief, kindi, is held by the oldest man in the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, men hunt and clear while women cultivate cassava. ...


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190.00

Lega Bwami mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask

A thick crust of white pigments surrounds the eyelids of the lega mask opposite. In the center of the ovoid jaw, a rectangular mouth is drawn. Fine pierced ears frame the face. Raffia beard still present.
Within the Lega, the Bwami society open to men and women,organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda during the seventeenth century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also called Warega , these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on hilltops. The role of chief, kindi, is held by the oldest man in the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, the men hunt and clear land while ...


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190.00

Masque League Idumu
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Masque League

Sculpted in the heart in the center of the ovoid volume of this African lega mask, the eyebrow arches join a small mouth that seems to emit a breath, calling for the secrecy of the initiates. A raffia beard extends the jaw. Glossy surface revealing the veining of the wood. This African Lega mask indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, a learning society composed of different ranks, and which were joined by wives whose spousehad reached the third level, that of the ngandu . Mask with beard: 40 cmWithin the Lega, the society of the Bwami open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the ...


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Lega Iginga figure
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

Anthropomorphic statuette with a face cut into a heart, reproducing the lega mask in miniature. The stocky morphology conveys a notion of vigor and stability.
Golden brown patina.
The tribal art of the Lega, Balega, or even Warega, is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made in ivory, some of which were kept in a basket intended for the highest ranking officers of the Bwami from different communities. This type of statuette of tribal art Iginga ( Maginga in the 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 initiatory stages, the highest being the Kindi. The statuettes were used during the initiation of the ...


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280.00

Lega Sakimatwematwe statue
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega statue

African Lega art and initiation media Sakimatwematwe (Multi-headed).
Related to a Lega proverb, endowed with two or more heads, this sculpture would always illustrate the need for a holistic view of events, and thus the prudence, wisdom, and impartiality that should follow.(Biebuyck 1973) Belonging to an initiate of the Bwami, among the many others used throughout the initiations, this carved object takes the form of a central trunk carried by legs. Groups of faces are superimposed in opposite directions. These are directed towards the four cardinal points. The teacher guided the aspirant to a place where masks and statuettes were displayed, and it was through careful observation that the future initiate had to guess the more or less complex meaning of these metaphors, ...


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140.00

Sakimatwematwe Lega figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Multi-head statue

A stylized tribal statuette named Sakimatwematwe (Multi-heads) belonging to an insider of the Bwami, among the many others used during the initiations, its structure is in the form of a central trunk around which two groups of losangic faces, in the concave centre, are directed in the north-south and west-east directions. According to a Lega proverb, this statuette would always illustrate the need for a global view of events, and therefore the prudence, wisdom and impartiality that should result. (Biebuyck 1973)
As initiation course, the teacher guided the aspirant to a place where masks and statuettes were exposed, and it was through careful observation that the future initiate had to guess the more or less complex meaning of metaphors illustrated by the sculptures, the latter ...


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Bwami Lega Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega Mask

This mask is used during the initiation rites of the Bwami society. It is open to men and women. The passage of a rank indicated the acquisition of a certain individual wisdom and morality. Dark brown patina abraded. Kaolin residue.
At the Lea, the society of the Bwami open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on the top of hills. The role of the leader, kindi, is held by the oldest man of the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, men hunt ...


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Anthromoporphic figure Lega
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

The tribal art of the Lega, Balega, or even Warega, is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made of ivory, some of which were kept in a basket for the highest ranking members of the Bwami from different communities. This type of Iginga (Maginga in the plural) tribal art statuette, was the property of the top brass of the Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives , and governing social life . This organization was subdivided into initiatory stages, the highest being the Kindi. The statuettes were used as the aspirants were initiated. Each is a representation with a particular form and meaning from which a moral or dogma always derives. The particularity of the Lega, contrary to other ethnic groups, is to judge the quality of their ritual objects according to ...


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380.00

Lega Bwami initiation figure
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega statue

In African art, this anthropomorphic sculpture of the Lega, lacking arms, was intended for an initiate of the Bwami . It was part of a set used throughout the initiations. The teacher guided the lega aspirant to a place where African lega masks and statuettes were displayed, and it was through careful observation that the future initiate had to guess the more or less complex meaning of these objects, veritable metaphors referring largely to proverbs and sayings. Those who were not allowed to see the object, in order to be protected from it, had to undergo costly ceremonies, and sometimes even join the lower rank of the Bwami,kongabulumbu, at great expense to the families. Each of these initiations took place over seven days and involved at least seven performances. Objects "won" ...

Small Lega Lukwakongo mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask

Primitive Lega sculptures in African art. In spite of a flat volume engraved with lines in low relief, this mask remains powerfully expressive. Smooth satin patina. This African Lega mask indicated the stage that its holder had reached in the Bwami, an apprenticeship society composed of different grades, which was joined by wives whose spouses had reached the third level, that of ngandu . Total height on pedestal: 25 cm.
Within the Lega, the Bwami society, open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda during the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, these individuals live in autonomous ...


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105.00

Masque Lega Lukwakongo
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Masque Lega

Lega primitive sculptures in African art.
This mask, which was not intended to be worn, but manipulated during rituals, displays an oblong face in which the eye sockets are hollowed out in the heart. The coffee bean eyes, the nostrils, are hollowed out, the mouth absent. Smooth satin patina, the center of which is smeared with a crust of chipped kaolin. This African Lega mask indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, a learning society composed of different ranks, and which were joined by wives whose spouse had reached the third level, that of the ngandu . Within the Lega, the society of Bwami open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from ...


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Small Lega Lukwakongo mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask

Primitive Lega sculptures in African art. This mask, which was not intended to be worn, but manipulated during rituals, displays heart-shaped eye sockets and coffee-bean eyelids, a simply incised mouth, giving it an enigmatic expression. Smooth satin patina, whose center is coated with kaolin. This African Lega mask indicated the stage that its holder had reached in the Bwami, an apprenticeship society composed of different grades, which was joined by wives whose spouses had reached the third level, that of ngandu . Total height on pedestal: 27 cm.
Within the Lega, the Bwami society, open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda during the 17th century, ...


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Lega Bwami Animal figure Mugugundu
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

Associated with animal qualities, this initiation figure, zoomorphic, represents a quadruped (mugugugundu) from the Lega environment. The statuette belonged to a high ranking member of the Bwami.
Dark brown satin patina. Following their exodus from Uganda during the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also called Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on hilltops. The role of chief, kindi , is held by the oldest man in the clan, who must be the highest ranking. As in other forest tribes, the men hunt and clear land while the women cultivate cassava. The Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives , governed social life . This organization was subdivided into ...

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Lega Bwami initiation figure
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

A head surmounts a seat "kisumbi" , emblematic element of the Yananio level of Bwami. Each of the initiates of this rank had indeed a stool that he kept until his death. This object forms a metaphor for the moral values of Bwami, its meaning evolving with the initiatory performances.. It was part of a set used during initiations into the Bwami society of the Lega. The teacher guided the aspirant in a place where masks and statuettes were exposed, and it was through careful observation that the future initiate had to guess the more or less complex meaning of these metaphors, the latter referring largely to proverbs and sayings.
Light crusty patina. Cracks and erosions.


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280.00

Lega zoomorphic mask
African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask

This African mask, probably from the Lega, appears to depict a mammal, a feline more precisely.
Mottled patina rubbed with kaolin.
These masks indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, an apprenticeship society composed of different ranks, and which was joined by wives whose spouses had reached the third level, that of the ngandu.


Within the Lega, the Bwami society open to men and women,organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following their exodus from Uganda in the seventeenth century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, they live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on ...


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250.00

Figures League Iginga
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > League Figures

Enigmatic statuette with a face carved in heart, like the masks of the ethnic group. Feathers could be attached to the perforations of the head. The rectangular, flat bust, on which horizontal forearms appear in relief, is studded with hollow dotted. The legs without feet, semi-resalted, are spread sideways.
The African art of the Lega , Balega, or Warega , is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made of ivory, some of which were kept in a basket for the highest ranks of the Bwami of different communities. This type of tribal art statuette Iginga ( Maginga in the plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of the Bwami, a secret society that admits men and their wives, and governs social life. This organization was subdivided into initiation stages, the ...


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Lega Iginga figure
African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega figure

The tribal art of the Lega, Balega, or even Warega, is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made in ivory, some of which were kept in a basket for the highest ranking Bwami of different communities.
This type of tribal art statuette Iginga ( Maginga in the plural), was the property of the high ranking members of the Bwami , a secret society admitting men and their wives , and governing social life . This organization was subdivided into initiatory stages, the highest being the Kindi.
The statuettes were used in the course of the initiation of the aspirants. Each one is a representation with a particular form and meaning from which a moral or a dogma is always derived. The particularity of the Lega, contrary to other ethnic groups, is to judge the quality of ...


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125.00

Iginga Lega Figurine
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Lega Figurine

African lega art and initiation materials.
Anthropomorphic statuette with a face hollowed out in the heart, carried by thick crenellated legs. Among the many others used during initiations, it belonged to an initiate of the Bwami. The teacher guided the aspirant to a place where masks and statuettes were displayed, and it was through careful observation that the future initiate had to guess the more or less complex meaning of the metaphors evoked by the sculptures, the latter referring largely to proverbs and sayings. Those who were not allowed to see the object, in order to be protected from it, had to submit to costly ceremonies, and sometimes even join the lower rank of Bwami, the kongabulumbu ,at great expense to the families. Each of these initiations lasted seven days ...


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Iginga League figurines
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > League figurines

The African art of the Lega, Balega, or Warega , is distinguished by its initiation statuettes, also made of ivory, some of which were kept in a basket for the highest ranks of the Bwami of different communities. This type of tribal art statuette Iginga ( Maginga in the plural), was the property of the high-ranking officers of the Bwami, a secret society that admits men and their wives, and governs social life. This organization was subdivided into initiation stages, the highest being the Kindi.Following their exodus from Uganda during the 17th century, the Lega settled on the west bank of the Lualaba River in the DRC. Also known as Warega, these individuals live in self-contained villages surrounded by palisades, usually on the top of hills. The role of the chief, kindi , is held by the ...


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