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Each work presented on this site of tribal art comes from private European and American collections. All of them have been meticulously appraised, and are accompanied by a certificate of authenticity, and are worthy of inclusion in the most beautiful collections of African art.

A permanent exhibition

Launched on June 1, 2019, the permanent exhibition "When the primitive arts express themselves" welcomes you from Monday to Saturday in the premises of Essentiel Galerie, to allow you to physically discover a wide variety of objects, regularly renewed. Do not hesitate to come and visit it at 73 rue de Tournai 7333 Tertre in Belgium. Phone: +32 65 529 100

The prices

Our knowledge of the tribal art market, based on 35 years of experience, has led us to make it a point of honor to always be the most competitive. We can thus, guarantee you the best prices.

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Latest tribal artworks

Wé / Bété mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Wé mask

The African art in Ivory Coast.
This African tribal mask from the Bete/We ethnic group adopts a most fantastic appearance. Fangs highlight the contours of the face, white clay marks the bulbous eyelids.
Granular patina.
It is mainly in the west of the Ivory Coast that the Bété employ masks whose style has been influenced by the gla mask society of the Wobé and Guéré populations, group called Wé or "men who forgive easily", itself belonging to the cultural group Krou , these traditions having been transmitted and taught to them by the Nyabwa . Of warlike origin but also participating in the resolution of conflicts, this sacred mask is worn accompanied by amulets that protect its wearer from its power against witchcraft. It is in order to reinforce its ...


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790.00  632.00

Dogon Kanaga mask
Tribal art > African mask > Dogon mask

Coll. art africain française Voltz, piece estimated around 1920 according to Zemanek-Münster where it was acquired.
In funeral rites, members of the Awa society, dance with the masks on the roof of the dead man's house, to lead his soul (nyama) to his eternal rest and to defend the living. The Kanaga mask is also used to protect hunters from the vengeance of the prey he has killed.
This example is designed according to a recurrent structure and the features evoke a bird's beak. As a preliminary to funerals or during the mourning period, numerous copies, almost all identical, appear on the dance floor, after having circulated in the village's alleys. Depending on the degree of initiation, this mask will not have the same meaning when it is brought out during the mourning ...


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2450.00

Lengola Bukota Janiform figure
Tribal art > African Statues > Lengola figure

The African art stylized from the forest tribes.
Janiform figure symbolizing the male and female, lacking upper limbs, and treated in rectangular planes. This kind of object was used by the Bukota society. Lengola statues could also constitute ritual supports dedicated to therapeutic rites. The inclination of the head gives this sculpted work a great expression of gentleness.
Mottled polychrome and matte patina. Small crack.
The Lengola, are established near the Metoko in the center of the Congolese basin between the Lomami and Lualaba rivers, a primary forest people dedicated to the worship of a single God, a rare monotheism in Africa. Their society,the Bukota, welcoming both men and women, is the equivalent of the Bwami association of the Lega. Their ...


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380.00

Gu Guro mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Guro mask

Mask represented topped with an amulet like those that women inserted in their hair. It was used with Zamble and Zaouli, but is no longer used today. ("Guro", ed. 5Continents, pl.13) Numerous erosions.
Among the Mande group in the south, in central Côte d'Ivoire, on the banks of the Bandama, the Gouro are organized into lineages, and are the western neighbors of the Baoulé who have borrowed several features of their African tribal art creations. Animists, they have used since the 1950s a family of masks associated with the Zaouli dance. Indeed like the African Goli masks of the Baule, the set of Guro masks, relating to the genies of nature, comes in two zoomorphic masks followed by a third anthropomorphic one, which is considered the wife of the zamblé mask, the Gu. Priest ...


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480.00  384.00

Dan Gunyeya "racing" mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Dan mask

An actor of the social order, the African Dan mask would, according to Eberhard Fisher, be of the female or male type. The almond-shaped face, with protruding, full lips, is pierced by large circular eyes. Abraded patina of use, erosions, grainy matte areas.
The masks equipped with round orbits ( named gunyeya or gunye ge), facilitating vision, are part of the mask set of the Northern Dan and are used for racing events in the dry season. As for the zapkei ge , equipped with a gaze highlighted with red textile pierced with circular orbits, they are responsible for preventing fires by watching over domestic fires. They are worn accessorized with caps, braids, textile cape and raffia, the most prestigious of them being the go ge , royal mask reserved for exceptional events. ...


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650.00  520.00

Hemba Mambwe simian mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Hemba masker

Exceptional mask of character representing a monkey, and whose power is expressed through features and volumes skillfully rendered. Marks of use, velvety patina, small accidents and abrasions. Residues of red pigments.
Only two types of Hemba masks have been identified: that of an anthropomorphic type with regular features, whose pointed chin is reminiscent of statuary, and those depicting monkeys,the soko mutu , and whose functions remain little known, but which probably belonged, according to J.Kerchache, to the secret societies bugabo and bambudye . The smallest specimens ( about twenty centimeters) would have been carried in the hand during rites intended for the protection of the home and fertility. In addition to the janiform statuettes kabeja , the statues of male ...


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750.00  600.00

Statuette Baoule Blolo bia
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Tribal art > African Statues > Colon Baule

This African statuette, Blolo bia, adopts certain canons of the Baule statues, including muscular legs with protruding calves and a frontal posture. Beautiful abraded polychrome patina. br> About sixty ethnic groups populate Côte d'Ivoire, including the Baule, in the center, Akans from Ghana, people of the savannah, practicing hunting and agriculture just like the Gouro from whom they borrowed ritual cults and sculpted masks. Two types of statues are produced by the Baoulé, Baulé, within the ritual framework: The Waka-Sona statues, "being of wood" in Baoulé, evoke an assié oussou, being of the earth. They are part of a type of statues intended to be used as a medium tool by the komien diviners, the latter being selected by the asye usu spirits in order to communicate revelations ...


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290.00  232.00

Bamoun Rider
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Tribal art > African Rider > Bamoun Rider

This Bamoun rider controlling a prancing horse would represent King N'Doya in his victory over the Peuls in the 19th century. Dark brown leather dresses the shapes of the character and his frame, lighter leather covers the hooves. The king armed with a sword is dressed in a traditional costume, the Hausa having introduced clothing transformations among the Bamoun, he wears leather stirrups connected by a rigid wicker rod. The various decorative elements and materials used here form an exceptional work.
The Bamun live in a region full of wooded landforms as well as savannahs. This large territory called Grassland located in the southwest of Cameroon is also the seat of other nearby ethnic groups such as the Bamiléké and the Tikar. Bamoun art is illustrated by bas-relief ...


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1250.00  1000.00

Small circumcision mask Zombo
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Tribal art > African mask > Zombo mask

Ex. Belgian African Art Collection.
The nzo longo male circumcision ceremonies of the Zombo are accompanied by masked dances. These rituals take place around the retreat of the young, for several months, during which the necessities of social, village and religious life will be taught to them.
This mask topped by a rounded visor crest is divided into areas of contrasting colors. The nose, eye sockets and mouth are delicately carved. An abundant ornament of raffia accompanies the whole. Velvety pigmented patina. Height on base: 51 cm.

Neighbors of the Yaka , the Nkanu and the Kongo in the west of the former Zaire, on the border with Angola, the Zombo fear, like the Kongo clans, the god named Nzambi. Their diviners use fetishes comparable to those of the ...


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1150.00  920.00

Dogon Walu mask
Tribal art > African mask > Dogon mask

Ex-French African art collection.
The presence of horns on this ancient Dogon mask recalls the walu, an animal linked to Dogon cosmogony. High rectangular depressions have been fitted with cavities for vision. An ancient polychromy, white spotted with ochre, remains faintly. Velvety surface, cracks of desiccation. Marcel Griaule counted no less than 78 types of Dogon masks during his fieldwork. This piece, with its stylized features, is characteristic of Dogon creations. The latter, influenced by their predecessors in the Bandiagara region, the Tellem, have retained this verticality in their pieces. In parallel with Islam, Dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lebe, relating to fertility, the Wagem, ancestor worship under the authority of the ...


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1200.00

Yaka n-kisyan-khanda mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Yaka Mask

An elaborate structure, based on textile-trimmed basketry, has a single circular tray framed by antennae for this northern Yaka mask. The Zombo also used similar masks sculpted by the Yaka. The visor here is broken. Insiders could wear these single-platform masks that appeared in pairs. Very beautiful locally abraded granular polychromy.
As initiation songs accompanied the appearance of the African Yaka mask, which incorporates the category of high-ranking masks thanks to its tiered headdress. Their design aroused the creativity of the sculptors whom the chefs rewarded for their talent. Hierarchical and authoritarian, composed of fearsome warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the resulting prestige ...


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440.00  440.00

Lobi Bateba phuwé statue
Tribal art > African Statues > Lobi statue

Depicted head-on, with arms placed along the bust, this Lobi figure has a sunken head with a serious face. The large closed eyelids have been treated horizontally like the mouth. This ancient wooden sculpture, the Bateba, was placed on the altar after a ritual to become the receptacle of a bush spirit, the Thil, and thus become an active being, an intermediary who fights against sorcerers and all other harmful forces. The golden patina is particularly lustrous. Small xylophagous damage stopped.
When honored, these spirits manifest their benevolence in the form of abundant rains, good health, numerous births; Ignored, they withdraw it and bring devastating epidemics, drought and suffering. These spirits convey to the diviners the laws that followers must follow to receive ...


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780.00

Makonde mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Makonde mask

Scaled down version for this African mask Makonde embodying an ancestral spirit. The ancestors would return masked to mark their satisfaction following initiation. A labret distorts the upper lip. The incised patterns refer to the traditional tattoos and scarifications of the Makonde.
Satin patina.
The Makonde of northern Mozambique and southern Tanzania wore mask-helmets called lipiko during initiation ceremonies for young men. The Makonde worship an ancestor , which explains the abundance of naturalistic female statuary. In addition to the facial masks worn during mapiko dances and ngoma ceremonies that instruct youth about the requirements of marriage and family life. the Makonde also produce body masks featuring the female bust. (Art and Life in Africa, C.D. Roy)


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480.00  384.00

Fang fetish object of the Byeri
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Tribal art > African fetish > Fang fetish

French African tribal art collection.
The African art of the Byeri cult is illustrated by various anthropomorphic sculptures acting as "guardians" and embodying the ancestor.
This rare object (reliquary guardian of atypical form?), is formed of a piriform body, with a hollowed center, surmounted by a figurative motif associated with the ancestors of the clan. Patina of use, greyish brown. Cracks. Among the Fang, the boxes containing the relics of illustrious ancestors were kept by the oldest man in the village, the "esa". Topped by a statue or a head that acted as a guardian of the "byeri" boxes, they were stored in a dark corner of the hut, supposed to divert evil influences to someone else. They were also used during the initiation ceremonies of young people linked to the ...


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750.00  600.00

Dogon Tellem statue
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Tribal art > African Statues > Dogon statue

African Dogon art.
Male figure with columnar bust standing on bent legs. Short, small arms frame the face. Grainy matte surface, cracks.
The African tribal statues of the Dogon may also be the object of worship by the entire community when they commemorate, for example, the founding of the village. These statues, sometimes embodying the nyama of the deceased, are placed on ancestor altars and participate in various rituals including those of the seed and harvest periods. Their functions, however, remain little known. The figures with raised arms always symbolized a prayer to Amma for the granting of the rain that is essential to all life, and it could also be a gesture of contrition following the violation of a law that led to a drought. The southern part of the plateau ...


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490.00  392.00

Angas / Afo iron coinage
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Tribal art > African Currencies > Angas Currency

These primitive large hoe-shaped coins were used for offerings, wedding dowries, and of course for major festive and ceremonial occasions. The Angas tribes of the Jos Plateau in northern Nigeria offered such objects as dowries to the father of the bride-to-be. These coins also had a ceremonial function during the celebration of the union. Some people, however, attribute these specially shaped coins to the Afos, a neighboring tribe settled below the Jos plateau. The Afos speak a Benue-Congolese language: Eyoli. Two parts stand out, a narrow handle and the lower part of rectangular shape known as the shovel shape which is also found among the Mambilas.
The oxidation of the iron offers an inimitable patina.


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480.00  384.00

Dogon blade mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Dogon mask

Topped with a high flat crest, this African Dogon mask is one of the many stylistic variations of Dogon masks, icons of Dogon tribal art. Angular features, eyes hollowed out in a triangle, thin protruding lips, and a protrusion extending the nose, characterize this mask carved in a dense wood, with a grainy surface. Polychrome crusty patina with local flaking. The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, their esotericism, their myths and legends. Their population is estimated at about 300,000 souls living southwest of the Niger loop in the Mopti region of Mali (Bandiagara, Koro, Banka), near Douentza and part of northern Burkina (northwest of Ouahigouya). The villages are often perched on the top of scree on the side of hills, according to a unique architecture. The ...


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750.00  600.00

Figure Niombo Bwendé, Bwemde
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Tribal art > African Statues > Bwendé Statue

Ex-collection African art from Belgium.
This is a reduction figure of the niombo, a sometimes giant funerary anthropomorphic "bundle" representing the deceased, buried at funerals during ancestor cults. The doll is made of a wickerwork frame dressed in textile. It was kept in the house of the chiefs. The Vili, the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembé, the Bwende, the Yombé and the Kôngo constituted the Kôngo group, led by the king ntotela. Their kingdom reached its peak in the 16th century with the ivory and copper trade and the slave trade. With the same beliefs and traditions, they produced a statuary with a codified gesture in relation to their vision of the world. The sculptures of the Bwendé were strongly inspired by those of the neighboring Beembe.


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280.00  224.00



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