African art > pipe > Luba pipe
Ex-Belgian African art collection.
Riding the furnace of a water pipe, this Luba female effigy, a spiritual medium, has classic features in an ovoid face. Its Shankadi-type headdress, behind a wide headband that unveils a shaved forehead, evokes the hairstyles of Luba women at the beginning of the twentieth century. Her attitude, with her hands positioned on both sides of the chest, reminds us that the secrets of royalty (bizila) belong to women through their role as political and spiritual intermediary. Satin brown patina.
The Luba (Baluba in Tchiluba) are a Central African people. Their cradle is Katanga, more precisely the region of the lubu river, so the name (Baluba, which means «the Lubas»). They were born of a secession of the Songhoy ethnic group, under the ...