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Tribal art - African Chair:

Essential pieces of tribal art and true masterpieces, these objects are, today, used to decorate an interior. Originally of a purely usual function, the stools were used by the notables of the village. These objects are generally composed of one or more statues supporting the seat.


Carved table with Dogon ram caryatid
Tribal art > African Chair > Dogon table

Traditional African furniture.
A figure of a ram supports the top of this sculpted monoxyl table, polished with use, offering a light brown golden patina.
Exceptional piece, acquired in situ.
Desiccation 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 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 at the top of the scree on the side of the hills, according to a unique architecture. The history of the migrations and settlements of the Dogon (ten main groups, fifteen different languages), bears on ...


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1750.00

Fragment of a Luba Lupona stool
Tribal art > African Chair > Luba stool

Sacrality of the sculpted seats, prestige regalia, in primitive African art .
A female figure supporting the circular plate of a seat, forms the "receptacle of a deceased sovereign chief" (Luba, Roberts). This stool named lupona , or kioni, kipona , kiona , according to the sources, constitutes the meeting point of the sovereign, his people, and protective spirits and ancestors, where past and present are symbolically and spiritually mingled. It was once the seat on which the king was enthroned. The seats were arranged on leopard skins when the new leader was inaugurated. It was only after being seated there that his address assumed a royal and divine character. Apart from these exceptional circumstances, the seats were not used and remained stored in secret places. ...


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280.00

Luba Kasaï / Kanyok stool
Tribal art > African Chair > Kanyok stool

Carved in a dense wood, this seat figures a human head, offering sketchy features, and carrying a cup that forms the circular seat. Patina of use, significant erosion and cracks from desiccation. Living in the east of the Luba kingdom on the banks of the Mbujimayi, and having adopted part of the Luba culture, the Kanyok, Kanioc, or Bena Kanioka, created prestigious objects, such as water pipes, neck rests, sticks, and stools, and are especially famous for statuettes represented in different postures, made of dark wood and wearing bun hairstyles.  According to the Kanyok religion, the human being is composed of three parts: body, soul and spirit.  They believe in a supreme being called Tang a Ngoy.  The initiation of young people traditionally included, in addition to circumcision, the ...


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390.00

Kusu Hemba prestige stool
Tribal art > African Chair > Kusu stool

Among the traditional sculptures reserved for dignitaries , this eroded seat that a figure embodying a clan ancestor or mythical hero supports. The statuette evokes the Songye and Hemba statues. Particularity of the Kusu, the face extending with a triangular beard.
Velvety surface.
Desiccation crack.
The Kusu settled on the left bank of the Lualaba have indeed borrowed the artistic traditions of the Luba and Hemba and possess a caste system similar to that of the Luba .  The Hemba on the other hand have settled in southeastern Zaire on the right bank of the Lualaba River. Once under the domination of the Luba , these farmers and hunters practice ancestor worship by means of effigies long attributed to the Luba. In this region, between the Bembe, Boyo, Hemba, ...


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950.00

Nyamezi anthropomorphic seat
Tribal art > African Chair > Nyamézi Throne

This chair, or throne, on three legs, with a female figure forming the backrest, materializes a concept of fecundity and lineage. The hollowed out eyes were usually encrusted with white pearls. The size of the ears contrasts with a classical physiognomy. Shaded, veined patina. Abrasions.
The Nyamwezi , Nyamezi , form the largest group among the tribes living in north central Tanzania. Coming from diverse origins, although sharing similar cultural specificities, their ritual and artistic production consequently presents very different formal aspects. The cult of ancestors and chiefs, of major importance within their culture, has left its mark on their statuary. The Sukuma and Nyamezi produced statues represented in a static position, some of which, with their filiform limbs, ...


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950.00

Double Kuba neck support
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Tribal art > African Chair > Tabouret Kuba

Original design, reserved for a couple according to some, this neck rest stands out thanks to its curved double support. The glossy supports, supported by three colonial feet emerging from a rectangular base, are engraved with geometric patterns arranged in regular triangles. This piece of furniture, widely distributed throughout the African continent, could have different uses: "dream support" preserving elaborate hairstyles, but also transportable seating, sometimes deliberately unstable in order to be able to cradle children, the base sometimes forming tablet, this utilitarian object, among some tribes of South Africa, became an object of seduction offered to the future wife.
Smooth, dark patina. Localized erosions.
The Kuba of the Democratic Republic of Congo, established ...


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Luba Kipona Headquarters
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Tribal art > African Chair > Luba Seat

Sacredness of the carved seats, regalia of prestige, in the primitive African art. A severely stylized caryatid supports the circular tray. The female figure is the "receptacle of a deceased sovereign chief"( Luba, Roberts). This tabouret named lupona ,or kioni ,kipona , kiona , depending on the source, constitutes the meeting point of the ruler, his people, and the protective spirits and ancestors, where past and present are symbolically and spiritually intermingled. It was once the seat on which the king was enthroned. The seats were placed on leopard skins during the investiture of the new chief. It was only after sitting on it that his speech took on a royal and divine character. Apart from these exceptional circumstances, the seats were not used and remained stored in secret ...


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Bena Lulua Prestigious Seat
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Tribal art > African Chair > Luluwa chair

The backrest and legs of this dignitary's chair take up the signs associated with the body scarification of the ethnic group. The face of the figure with the ringed neck on top of the seat also features salient motifs. According to Rik Ceyssens in "Congo Masks" (p.156 . ed. M.L.Félix) and as attested by the sketches of H.M. Lemme who accompanied Frobenius on his travels to the Congo, this model of scarification in loops was then widespread in different Luluwa subgroups in 1905. The Bakwa also had this type of tribal scarring. Comfortable seating. Glossy patina, shaded brown, orange reflections. Erosions, slight superficial cracks.
The different types of Luluwa, Lulua, or Bena Lulua statues, presenting multiple scarifications, glorify the local chiefs, maternity, ...

Dogon stool with caryatids
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Tribal art > African Chair > Dogon stool

Circular monoxyle seat in the center of which caryatids, arranged around a central pillar, support the upper plate. The contours are engraved with jagged friezes, a symbol related to water and creation. The wood is polished by use at the level of the seat. Cracks and erosions testify to the life of this original piece. The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, esotericism, 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 history of the migrations and settlements of the Dogon (about ...


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Tchokwe prestigious stool
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Tribal art > African Chair > Tabouret Chokwe

Ex-collection French tribal art.
Among the chef's regalia, this stool illustrates the importance attached to the prestige of its owner. The protection of ancestors is invoked thanks to the sculpted effigies playing the role of caryatids supporting the used circular seat. While one of them is like a Chokwe tribal leader who could be Chibinda Ilunga, a mythical hunter and hero, founder of the Chokwé ethnic group, wearing his large side winged headdress cipenya-mutwe, the second depicts an 18th century Portuguese settler. The chiefs had a major function in the rites of propitiation intended for the hunting and fertility of women, the objects being decorated with this figure therefore presumably having a protective function. Old prints of upholstery nails. Desication cracks.


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Table/ stool Luba Hemba Lupona
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Tribal art > African Chair > Tabouret Lupona

Supporting with her fingers placed in a fan shape the circular tray of a seat, or of a shelf, the object can also be used as a pedestal table, a female figure forms the "receptacle of a deceased sovereign chief" (Luba, Roberts). The protruding scarifications, in ears, are scattered across the bust where the umbilicus forms the "center of the world" associated with the lineage, and on the lower abdomen, horizontal, they symbolize fertility. This stool named lupona ,or kioni or kipona , kiona , according to the sources, is the meeting point of the sovereign, his people, and the protecting spirits and ancestors, where past and present symbolically and spiritually mingle. It once formed the foundation on which the king was enthroned. The seats were laid out on leopard skins when the new ...

Tabouret guéridon Hemba/ Luba Kihona
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Tribal art > African Chair > Tabouret Hemba

Supporting the circular tray of a seat with her fingers placed in a fan shape, a female figure forms the "receptacle of a deceased sovereign chief" (Luba, Roberts). Carved in the style of the "master of Buli" in the Hemba territory, she has a characteristic face, with large eye sockets and prominent cheekbones. Dark patina with orange highlights, minimal cracks. The prominent scarifications, in spikes, dot the bust where the umbilicus forms the "center of the world" associated with the lineage, and on the lower abdomen, horizontal, they symbolize fertility. This stool named lupona ,or kioni or kipona , kiona and again kitenta ("seat of authority"), according to the sources, constitutes the meeting point of the ruler, his people, and the protective spirits and ancestors, where past ...

Dan seat
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Tribal art > African Chair > Dan stool

Several ethnic groups in the Ivory Coast have seats similar in design to this Dan stool, but it is distinguished by its carved decorative motifs and sculpted legs. The sculptor has preserved the natural shape of a branch for the back. Desiccation cracks, patina of use, dark, oiled.
For the Dan people of the Ivory Coast, also called Yacouba, two very distinct universes are opposed: that of the village, composed of its inhabitants and its animals, and that of the forest, its vegetation and the animals and spirits that inhabit it. In order for these spirits to establish themselves, a specific area of the forest is designated and always preserved outside the dan villages. Sacrifices are also required in order to communicate through these spirits. Different types of Dan masks have ...


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Tabouret Songye
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Tribal art > African Chair > Songye Seat

A female figure whose face takes the form of the mask Kifwebe plays here the role of caryatide. Another incongruity is that excessive feet develop on a damaged circular promontory, just like the seat. This type of seat could also serve as a pedestal for fetishes mankishi (sing. nkishi). Three variants of this mask Kifwebe (pl. Bifwebe) or "Chasing the mort" (Roberts) stand out: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest see absent, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, appears to originate from the adjacent area between the northern Luba and the Southeastern Songye. They are worn with a long suit and a long beard made of natural fibers, absent on this copy, during the most important ...


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Lobi Chair
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Tribal art > African Chair > Lobi Seat

Among the elements of African furniture used daily, a chair lobi from Burkina Faso , whose long oblong seat, curved, is supported by two massive feet. This type of stool for individual use marked the social rank of its owner and did not lend itself under any circumstances.
The populations of the same cultural region, grouped under the name " lobi ", make up one-fifth of the inhabitants of Burkina Faso. Few in Ghana, they also settled in northern Côte d'Ivoire. It was at the end of the 18th century that the Lobi, coming from northern Ghana, settled among the indigenous Thuna and Puguli, the Dagara, the Dian, the Gan and the Birifor.
Patine, cracks and abrasions.


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Mangbetu prestige chair
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Tribal art > African Chair > Mangbetu Seat

Mangbetu, the African tribal art of prestige, was intended for the elite of society, such as this chair surmounted by a head with mangbetu characteristics. The circular seat is slightly concave, while the slightly curved back has remnants of motifs evoking the traditional tattoos of the tribe. Similar to those of the Asua pygmies with whom the tribe had relations, they varied according to the circumstances. The Mangbetu kingdom has been expressed through architectural works that impressed European visitors in the 19th century, a patina of use, luster, golden brown, cracks and abrasions.br>abli in the forest in the north-east of Zaire. Their furniture, weapons, adornments and statuary were imbued with a rare aesthetic quality. The Mangbetu story was based on the refinement of his court but ...


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Luba Lupona Caryatide Seat
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Tribal art > African Chair > Tabouret Luba

The sanctity of sculpted foundations, regalia of prestige, in early African art.
This seat depicting a crouching female figure, supporting the tray of a circular seat, forms the receptacle of a deceased sovereign leader (Luba, Roberts). The protruding scarifications converging on the umbilical, the centre of the world associated with lineage, those of the lower abdomen, the fullness of volumes, testify to notions of fertility. This stool named lupona, or kioni, kipona, kiona, according to the sources, constitutes the meeting point of the sovereign, his people, and protective spirits and ancestors, where symbolically and spiritually past and present mingle. It was once the seat on which the king was inducted. The seats were arranged on leopard skins at the inauguration of the new ...


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Tabouret Lwalwa
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Tribal art > African Chair > Lualua Seat

The seat of this stool of dignitary, equipped with a handle, is here supported by three mfondo masks whose eyes are encrusted with cauris. The masks Mfondo and Nkaki, with a barely dissimilar nasal profile, are difficult to differentiate, but the Mfondo would have a nose lost in the hairstyle. The multiple manipulations helped polish and polish the seat cove. Oiled black patina with underlying mahogany reflections, granular residue. Patina of abrased use.
This is near the Kasai River that the Lwalwa live, between Angola and Zaire. Historically with a matrilineal society, the Lwalwa, after having been influenced by Luba and Songy, adopted a patrilineal system within their rudimentary political and social organization. The nkaki, wood-carved mulela mask, is one of four types of masks ...


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Bembe Kalunga fetish tabouret
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Tribal art > African Chair > Bembe Seat

Preserved in the hut of the karunga society, or Alunga, this circular seat with a handle is carved with large orbits evoking the spirit of the Kalunga forest. They also appear on circumcision masks. The society not only exercised social control within the Bembe clan, but also organized public dances and pre-hunting ceremonies. Many abrasions of use. Desication cracks, erosions.
The Bembe is a Luba branch line that is believed to have left Congo in the 18th century. Their society and artistic tendency are influenced by their neighbours in the Lake Tanganyika region, the Lega, the Buyu, etc. Indeed, like the Lega, the Bembe had an association bwami responsible for initiation and structuring for society but while the bwami was exclusive to the Lega, other associations coexisted among ...

Dignitary Throne Dogon
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Tribal art > African Chair > Dogon Seat

Extensively decorated, this prestigious, monoxyle seat belonged to a Dogon chief. A feline sculpture supports the seat, while lion figures form its arms. The decoration of the back evokes the moucharabiehs, entirely sculpted with round-bump patterns describing different scenes: millet pounding, musicians, entwined couples, ploughing. On the other side of the file is a hermaphrodite character, standing on the caryatide animal whose tail he keeps vertically in front of him. This deep seat, with a sloping back, has a comfortable seat.
The characters could also symbolize the Nommos, mythical ancestors linked to the complex legends and beliefs of the Dogon. The Namo founded the eight dogon lineages and instilled weaving, the art of forging, and agriculture in his human descendants. This ...


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Tripode Ethiopia Tabouret
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Tribal art > African Chair > Ethiopian tabouret

Beautiful glossy patina for the seat of this little old stool. Three large curved feet support the thick circular tray, the crack of which has been restored with a metal clip. Dark brown patina.
The Oromo are a people living in the Horn of Africa. They are found in Ethiopia and northern Kenya.
They began a pastoral migration to northern territories in the 15th century, facilitated by the ruptures caused by the conquests of Ahmed Gragn. During this process, they clump together and cultivate the local populations.

They are known for their stylized neck supports and generally have a nice symmetry.


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