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Tribal art > African fetish > Kishi Fetish

Kishi Fetish (N° 16349)

This statuette is the result of the cooperation between the nganga, the sculptor and the client. Sculpted according to the instructions of the ritual priest, the figure intended for the client is then charged with the bishimba elements intended to counter any evil force. The face is plated with copper slats. In African culture, metal has magical, therapeutic and apotropaic properties. Ritual ingredients were also introduced into the abdomen (bishimba) into the horn, sometimes also in pouches attached to the loincloth, in order to strengthen the power of the object. Textiles, feathers and necklaces were also necessary attributes to guard against witchcraft. The face of the man is both reminiscent of the kifwebe mask. The volumes bounded by sharp angles lend a robust appearance to the anatomy of this ", former". The dark brown patina provides areas where granular residues remain. Lacking lower limbs, the character's bust rests on a wider circular base. It is draped like a loincloth of animal skin on which white fur appears locally. Cracks on the base. The fetish Songye , magical sculpture Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi ), plays the role of mediator between gods and men. Large copies 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 Kasai, Katanga and South Kivu. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. Very present in their society, divination allowed to discover the sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of the misfortunes that struck individuals.  

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Originex-collection Mercier
EthnySongye
CountryRDC
Material(s)wood, corne et peau animale, metal
Height cm45
Width12 cm
Weight1.50 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°

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