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African art items:


We offer you a large selection of unique pieces of African art. Coming from private collections or purchased directly “in situ”, these works are the subject of a special study to determine their provenance as well as their conditions of acquisition. We make it a point of honor to offer our customers quality works of African art, old or contemporary, acquired within the framework of an ethical market. It is the history of these pieces that we invite you to discover through our gallery and websites.

Statuette Rungu
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Statuette Rungu

Statuette representing a woman sitting cross-legged, with a large round head topped with a triple crest. Very large double-rimmed eyes and fine features form the particularity of this sculpture. With her digitized hands extending graceful arms, she holds a cup in front of the bust. Gray patina, desiccation cracks. Tribe of the Tabwa group, the Rungu are established in a region between the D.R.C. (Democratic Republic of Congo), Zambia and Tanzania. Under the influence of the neighboring Lubas and Bemba, the Rungu produced prestigious objects for dignitaries, stools, combs, spoons and scepters, frequently decorated with figures of couples or twins. Their king, called mwéné tafuna , lives in Zambia. A women's association, Kamanya , has dolls like those of the Tabwa.


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280.00  140.00

Bambara mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Bambara mask

This African mask Bambara has a long face, framed by growths representing mats. Intersecting linear patterns are incised on the matte surface. Patina of abraded use. Erosions and indigenous restoration.
The Bambara, Bamana (or "unbeliever" for Muslims), living in central and southern Mali, belong to the large Mande group, like the Soninke and the Malinke. Animists, they also believe in the existence of a creator god generically called Ngala, who would have 266 sacred attributes.
He coexists with another androgynous god, Faro, master of the Word. It is during the initiation ceremonies of young boys relating to the society of Ntomo, n'domo, and shared with their neighbors Malinke (including the Marka sub-group composed of Fulani and Moors living north of the Bamanas), ...


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280.00  180.00

Galva mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Galva mask

African judicial mask from the Okukwé society, worn on the occasion of funerals, the birth of twins, or other major events.
Irregular matte patina, desication chips and cracks.
The Galoa (or Galwa) live downstream from Lambaréné on the Ogooué River, bordering the Atlantic Ocean. They are called "people of the lake". They produced masks called Okouyi, Okukwé, used by initiatory societies to reveal witchcraft and their authors through divination. Several neighboring ethnic groups, including the Adouma and the Kota, use flat areas of contrasting colors in Gabon, including kaolin supposed to have apotropaic properties. The groups of Gabon practice the worship of the bwiti, worship of the ancestors, and their relics are surmounted by a sculpture acting as a watchman. The ...


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290.00  180.00

Chokwe axe
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African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Chokwe axe

A tool and both a ceremonial and war weapon, this type of object was brandished in the context of ceremonies and ritual dances. The hatchet has an eroded handle with a lustrous patina. Its originality is its double blade whose function is unknown to us. Erosions.
Peacefully settled in eastern Angola until the 16th century, the Chokwé were then subjected to the Lunda empire from which they inherited a new hierarchical system and the sacredness of power. The Chokwé did not have centralized power but large chiefdoms. They were the ones who attracted artists wishing to put their know-how at the exclusive service of the court. The artists created so many varied pieces and of such quality that the Lunda court only employed them.


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290.00  190.00

Dogon Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Dogon Mask

Minimalism for this African mask Dogon associated with the monkey. The orbital cavities are framed by a V-shaped ridge extending below the nasal bridge, concealing the mouth. The circular ears fit high on the skull. Cracks and erosions from use.
More than eighty types of Dogon masks have been listed, the majority used by circumcised initiates of the Awa society, during funeral ceremonies. The Awa designates the masks, their costumes, and all the Dogons in the service of the masks. The "nyama", the mask's vital force, is activated by various rituals in order to develop the object's full magical potential. The Ko mask of the Dogon is one of three types of monkey masks: Dege features a baboon and the masks Ko and Omono represent monkeys grivets . The monkeys feed on baobab ...


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340.00  240.00

Dan Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Dan Mask

A beak extends this African mask of the Dan Yacouba from the banks of the Cavally River, between Côte d'Ivoire and Liberia. This long curved beak, associated with a mask depicting a human face, would refer to the turaco, king of animals. The very dense headdress consists of multiple braids.
Glossy patina, small accidents.
End of beak eroded.
The Dan populations of the north known as Yacouba of the Ivory Coast and the Maou of Touba (Maouka), and those of the northeast of Liberia, after having borrowed them from the neighboring Mandé people, use them in the secret masculine ceremonies of which the Koma of the Maou Guerze of Liberia call it Nyomu . For some authors, it would appear during the Poro celebrations.
Ref. : "The Bird in the art of West Africa" F. ...


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390.00  280.00

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

Stocky, carried by ample feet, this sculpted figure offers a large head similar to a helmet mask. Among neighboring Kongo clans, the naked, squatting posture, sondama, evokes emergency action, attacking enemies in a supernatural way. The Hungaan, mixed with the Mbala, also carve similar figures. The headdress bears great similarities to the mukote headdress which among the Western Pende with which the Mbalashared mukanda circumcision rituals , became a symbol of the struggle against colonization in the early 20th century
Iconic pindi carvings were attributed to chief Mbala during his enthronement. Following a retreat of a few days, the royal insignia and charms were attributed to him, intended to fight the powers opposing hunting, social peace, and harvesting.
Grainy matte ...


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280.00  180.00

Kongo pestle
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African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Kongo pestle

Old grain pestle whose center is carved with two faces. One of them is represented sticking out his tongue, a gesture with symbolic connotation in rituals against witchcraft. Smooth and glossy honey-coloured patina. Desication cracks.
The Vili, the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembe, the Bwende, the Dondo/Kamba, the Yombé and the Kôngo constituted the Kôngo group, led by King Ntotela. Their kingdom reached its peak in the 16th century with the trade in ivory, copper and the slave trade. From comparable beliefs and traditions, they produced statuary endowed with codified gestures in keeping with their vision of the world. Their realistic masks took part in initiation ceremonies and the funerals of notables, and their nailed fetish statues, nkondi, were charged with magical elements ...


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280.00  180.00

Songye sculpture
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Songye sculpture

Fetish-sculpture nkishi (pl. mankishi ) protective, featuring a central foot bringing together miniature figures of kifwebe masks. The bishimba, magic charge, was housed in the object. Velvety black patina. Slight lacks, desication cracks.

These fetishes of protection intended for homes are among the most popular in Africa. The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, while the smaller figures belong to an individual or a family. In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to which they are related through common ancestors.
The ...


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280.00  180.00

Chihongo Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Chihongo Mask

Companion to the African Pwo mask, always worn by dancers of royal descent, this large mask is also used during the initiation rites of the mukanda society. The sacred mask Chihongo (chihongo also being a plant with therapeutic virtues), endowed with a wide grimacing mouth, is used during circumcision rites and royal ceremonies. The characteristic patterns on the forehead, and sometimes on the cheekbones, are part of the Chokwe aesthetic canons but also served as public markers of ethnic identity, such as the chingelyengelye cross.
Brown satin patina, erosions and desication cracks.
Peacefully settled in eastern Angola until the 16th century, the Chokwé were then subjected to the Lunda empire from which they inherited a new hierarchical system and the sacredness of power. ...


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290.00  180.00

Kuba Jar
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African art > Jars, amphoras, pots, matakam > Kuba Jar

Different forms of cups with similar designs aimed at glorifying the qualities of their owners were carved by the Kuba groups. The kneeling subject here wears conventional body and facial scarifications. Lustrous brown-black patina, abrasions and desication cracks.

The Kuba and the tribes established between the Sankuru and Kasai rivers, including the Bushoong and Dengese also originating from the Mongo group, are renowned for the refinement of prestige objects created for members of the high ranks of their society. Several Kuba groups indeed produced anthropomorphic ceremonial objects with refined motifs, including palm wine cups or poison oracles, drinking horns and goblets. The Kuba kingdom was founded in the 16th century by the Bushoong, who are still ruled by a king today. ...


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280.00  180.00

Dogon Staff
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African art > Stick of command, chieftaincy > Dogon Staff

The prestigious domolo crosier worn by Dogon men on their shoulders and sometimes found on altars and in binu sanctuaries recalls the insignia of the yona association. , the Yo domolo , or even Yo dyommodo , which forms the emblem of the "ritual thieves". These hoe-shaped emblems evoke a horse's head, the primordial animal of creation. Ritual patina, residual encrustations. Desication cracks.
The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, their esotericism, their myths and legends. Their population is estimated at around 300,000 souls living in the southwest of the Niger bend in the Mopti region of Mali. The Dogon blacksmiths form an endogamous caste called irim They now produce weapons, tools, and also work with wood.
"Masters of fire", they are also supposed to ...


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260.00  180.00

Mambila Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Mambila Mask

The African mask Mambila Suaga Bor is easily identifiable thanks to its gaping and toothed mouth as well as the pair of horns that cover it.
This type of mask zoomorphic is defined as dog-magpie mask.
This type of mask embodies a fierce aspect of the forces of nature and is only seen at sowing festivals.
In the procession he is always accompanied by another mask, this time with a human face that fights the negative forces of the Suaga Bor mask.

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, created a large number of masks and statues easily identified by their heart-shaped faces. Although the Mambila believe ...


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490.00  290.00

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

In southeastern Nigeria, the Igbo worship a considerable number of deities known as alusi, or agbara intermediaries to whom sacrifices such as kola nuts , money, kaolin, are granted in order to enjoy their favors. These sculptures produced in several regions range from about forty centimeters to human size. The sculptors turn out to be men, but the female followers very often contribute by completing the work using colored pigments. Hairstyle and integumentary ornaments also indicate the social rank of the character with the haughty posture, in this case a man with a round face, presenting a miniature subject evoking an infant. Chipped polychrome patina. Desication cracks and deep erosions. These statues are presented to the public only during annual ceremonies. During the year, they ...


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480.00  280.00

Yaka Statuette
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Yaka Statuette

These tribal statues, ritual charms belonging to lineages and providing protection against enemies, were made according to the instructions of the Nganga ngoombu and the sponsor of the object. These sculptures were then activated using rituals and incantatory formulas. The headdress is that of the land chiefs. Satin brown patina. Abrasions, chips.
Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are nowadays an opportunity for the Yaka to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals using charms linked to the "khosi" institution. The youth initiation society is the n-khanda, which is found among the eastern Kongo (Chokwe, ...


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290.00  180.00

Ambete reliquary
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Ambete reliquary

Statues of ancestors in the African art of Mbede, Mbete, or Ambete.
Ancestor worship among the Mbete is accompanied by sculpted figures frequently playing the role of reliquary. This statuette offers for this purpose a dorsal cavity encrusted with residual pink ocher pigments. The barrel-shaped morphology and the flat, stylized face, topped with a crest, are specific features of the ambete sculpture. This copy also wears braided raffia accessories, mats, choker and small loincloth.

Grainy patina, desiccation cracks.
The Mbete form a tribe of Gabon, on the border of the Middle Congo, close to the Obamba and the Pounou, whose history has been marked by a long-term conflict against the Teke. They do not have a centralized political organization, practice ancestor ...


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240.00  180.00

Makonde Calabash
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African art > Used objects, pulleys, boxes, loom, awale > Makonde Calabash

Fruit of the hollowed out and dried calabash tree, surmounted by a sculpted bust evoking a monkey, and whose base is trimmed with a leather fringe.
Abrasions, losses. The Makonde of northern Mozambique and southern Tanzania wore helmet masks called lipiko during initiation ceremonies for young people. The Makonde venerate an ancestor, which explains the abundance of naturalistic female statuary. Besides the African face masks worn during mapiko dances and ngoma ceremonies that educate young people about the demands of marriage and life family, the Makonde also produce body masks featuring the female bust. Young Makonde boys and girls must submit to a period of seclusion of about six months, during which they are taught songs, dances and practical activities. The rules of behavior ...


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240.00  180.00

Fipa statue
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African art > Maternity, statues, bronze, wood > Fipa statue

African motherhood depicting a character carrying a child. The eyes are encrusted with pearls while large ears frame a neutral countenance. Rough patina, residual ocher encrustations.
This piece of tribal art comes from the northeastern region of Tanzania, bordering Kenya, facing the Indian Ocean, where the Paré, Shamba, Zigua, and Mbugu tribes live. A relative homogeneity characterizes the productions of these groups, recalling some of the Madagascans and Bataks with whom, via maritime trade, contact could once have been established. This sculpture was probably used for didactic purposes during male initiations. She could also embody an ancestor or a spirit. Lit. : "Black African Tribal Art" J.B. Bacquart.


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240.00  180.00

Bembe Statuette
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African art > African statues : tribal fetish, maternity > Bembe Statuette

African tribal art and ancestor carvings for fertility and healing rituals. Male figure of realistic type, whose keloids are drawn on the bust. These scarifications bear witness to the successive stages of initiation to which an individual had been subjected. Sometimes set with ivory or earthenware, the almond-shaped eyes are encrusted with horn. Smooth surface, mahogany and black patina.
Established on the plateaus of the People's Republic of Congo ex.Brazzaville, and not to be confused with the Bembe group of northern Lake Tanganinyika, the small group Babembé, Béembé, was influenced by the Téké rites and culture, but especially by that of the Kongos. Settled in the current Republic of Congo, the Béembé originally formed the kingdom of Kongo, with the Vili, Yombé, Bwendé and ...


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150.00  100.00

Tschokwe mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Tschokwe mask

br>African Chokwe pwo masks, among the many akishi masks (sing: mukishi, indicating power) of African Chokwe tribal art, are exclusively female representations which were accompanied by accessories and finery. Together with their male counterparts, cihongo recognizable by their large plate-shaped headdress, the pwo must bring fertility and prosperity to the community. The characteristic patterns present on the forehead, and sometimes on the cheekbones, are part of the Chokwe aesthetic canons but also served as public markers of ethnic identity. This recurring cruciform frontal motif would also carry a cosmogonic significance. Always worn by initiates of higher rank, these feminine masks were often decked out with buttons and accessories of European origin. Teeth cut to a point used to ...


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190.00  100.00

Chokwe Mask
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African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Chokwe Mask

Belgian African art collection.
African Chokwe pwo masks, among the many akishi masks (sing: mukishi, indicating power) d he African Chokwe tribal art, are exclusively female representations which were accompanied by accessories and finery. Joined to their male counterparts, cihongo recognizable by their large headdress in the shape of a plate, the pwo must bring fertility and prosperity to the community. The characteristic patterns present on the forehead, and sometimes on the cheekbones, are part of the Chokwe aesthetic canons but also served as public markers of ethnic identity. This recurring cruciform frontal motif would also carry a cosmogonic significance. Always worn by initiates of higher rank, these female masks were often decked out with buttons and accessories of ...


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175.00  100.00





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