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Tribal art - African Dolls:

African dolls are used by women and girls, they usually wear them on the abdomen, wrapped in their loincloths. The purpose is that the doll acts positively on the fertility of the one who carries it.

Figure Niombo Bwendé, Bwemde
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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Mossi Biga fertility charm
Tribal art > African fetish > Biga doll

Anthropomorphic figure in bronze evoking a young Mossi woman. A ritual statuette supposed to help in conception, it was made in metal by the Mossi blacksmith, who was also in charge of the carved wooden examples. The use of dolls by young African women is not exclusively within the context of initiation. When menstruation appears, the young girl is considered as a potential mother. In many ethnic groups, the search for fertility is then done through initiation rites. Wooden figures are then carved, some reflecting both genders, often dressed in beads and clothes. During the period of seclusion, the doll, which becomes a child that requires daily feeding, washing and anointing, becomes the girl's only companion. After the initiation, they will be carried on the back of the women, or ...

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Big fetish doll Tabwa Mpundu
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Tribal art > African Dolls > Tabwa doll

The African tribal art of the Tabwa, prestige objects.
Used by the feminine initiation society, this figure with a cylindrical bust with breasts and an umbilicus in relief, has scarifications comparable to those, traditional, of the members of the tribe, and has a remarkable honey-colored patina. Carefully carved into an ovoid head, the delicately modeled juvenile features are also framed by chequered keloids. The hairstyle is meticulously figured, following the contours of the head. Good condition despite a very slight crack.
The Tabwa ("to scarify" and "to write") are an ethnic group present in the southeast of the DRC. Simple farmers without centralized power, they federated around tribal chiefs after being influenced by the Luba. It is mainly during this period that ...

Fon Ewe fetish doll
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Tribal art > African Statues > Ewe Fetishes

African art and tribal cult vodun of the ewe and fon populations.
These naturalistic figures, depicting a couple or twins venovi , carry a thick crusty film resulting from ritual anointings. An underlying clear wood appears locally. Blackish mate patina.
Au togo, African fetishes are part of beneficial or evil rituals according to the intentions of their owner. The fetishists, following the divination ritual of fa using palm nuts, make them to order to offer protective and medicinal virtues but also offer versions ready to use more conventional. The Ashanti of Ghana also use rare similar statuettes covered with sacrificial coating.
These practices still in use today are sometimes decried and considered animist and gone in the age of Christianization and Islamization. ...

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Yoruba Fertility Fetish Doll
Tribal art > African fetish > Yoruba statuette

Set on two thin legs apart from the width of the pelvis, this feminine figure, reduced, has amazing protruding and asymmetrical pupils giving it the appearance of an insect or even a small animal. Stretched eyebrows largely overlook the eye, while the nose and mouth are carefully sculpted into the extremity of the chin. The tubular neck extends from two tiny breasts supported by the character's hands. It is a fetish for individual use from Akpro-Missérété. Smoothed by a regular grip, the patina has adopted an orange-brown hue. Long desication cracks.
Vingt-five million Yoruba are scattered between Nigeria, Benin, and Togo. Among the broad pantheon Yoruba, the god named Ogun god of iron and war, was also that of blacksmiths and sculptors. The creator Olodumare reigns over four ...

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Couple of statuettes Ewe Venovi
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Tribal art > African Statues > Couple Ewe

These naturalistic sculptures depict a young couple only dressed in a loincloth, their ringed neck forms a specificity of agni productions. Their attitude, arms removed from the bust, head held high, and their appearance give them a worthy interiority. Interesting patina matte, grainy and locally velvety (old kaolin residue?). Abrasions and cracks.
The lagoon populations of eastern Côte d'Ivoire mainly include the Attié, Akyé, the Ebrié and the Abouré. Their sculptures offer many similarities. These kingdoms had the first commercial settlements offering gold, ivory, slaves and pepper to the West. The Agni settled in the northeast of this region.
Among the Akan group, the Attié, Akye, of Akye-Fo, the holders of the blade, are divided between those of the North and those of the ...

Tabwa fetish doll
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Tribal art > African Dolls > Tabwa doll

The African tribal art of Tabwa, prestigious objects.

The Tabwa ("scarifier" and ", write") are an ethnic group in southeastern DRC. Simple farmers without centralized power, they united around tribal leaders after being influenced by the Luba. It was mainly during this period that their artistic current was expressed mainly through statues but also through masks. The Tabwa worshipped ancestors and dedicated some of their statues named mkisi . Animists, their beliefs are anchored around the ngulu, nature spirits present in plants and rocks. The Luba dominated the Tabwa in the Lake Tanganyika region between Zaire and Zambia. "Tabwa" or " being attached" presumably refers to the system of slavery practiced in the past by Islamic merchants.
The Tabwa then regained their ...

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Ghana s Akua ba Ashanti dolls
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Tribal art > African Dolls > Statue Akan

Used by the Ashanti and Fantis of Ghana, Akuaba (plural Akua'mma) doll statuettes are amulets used by Ashanti women to promote fertility. They are easily identifiable by their stylized appearance. Their flat, circular head has a high front occupying the upper part, the lines usually appear in the lower third of the head. A beauty brand, the ringed neck also symbolizes prosperity. Worn behind the backs of women, these statues are also accompanied by various rituals, such as the ingestion of a potion, or the arrangement of the object on the family altar. After the birth of the child, the sculpture serves as a toy, and sometimes still offered to the healer in order to witness its effectiveness. This ancient doll depicts the mother carrying her child behind her back, firmly held by a draped ...

Fertility doll Akuaba Ashanti
Tribal art > African Statues > Ashanti doll

Fertility symbols in African art Ashanti
This stylized female figure is called Akua'ba (plural Akua'mma). It has traditional features: a flat, circular head surmounting a tubular bust with horizontal arms. A similar miniature effigy, depicting the child, is housed in the textile of which it is draped. These stylized wooden effigies were worn by pregnant women, huddled in their loincloths, to ensure the arrival of beautiful children. The overwhelming majority of these statues are female, with breasts.

Shanti are one of the ethnic groups of Ghana (formerly "), part of the Akan group, living in a forested area. Like other people living in the central and southern part of Ghana, she speaks a language of the Twi group. This people regard women as the final arbiter of all ...

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Statuette Ewe Venovi
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Tribal art > African Statues > Statuette Ewe

A Togolese version of the Ibedji fetish statuettes of Nigeria's Yoruba, the female figure carved from light wood features rounded volumes and an ovoid face with protruding eyes. The arms with digitized butns are spread from the bust, and the feet, one of which is missing, are blackened. Honey glossy patina.Ex. collection of the painter 'a href'U'0022" Karl Heinz Engstfeld and 'a target' _blank' href' Ruth Engstfeld-Schremper , glazier artist. The Ewe consider the birth of twins called Venavi (or Venovi) as a happy omen. They must be treated equally and fairly. For example, both will be fed and washed at the same time and will wear the same clothes until puberty.
If one of the twins dies, ...

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