Tribal art > African Statues > Statues Chamba
Chamba Figure Couple (N° 19313)
Emblems of male associations, these narrow figures that a common base connects stand vertically. The diamond-shaped arms envelop a tubular bust surmounted by short crenellated legs. The neck rises towards a head with prominent features, wearing a rounded crest like a helmet. The crest is extended by braids that frame the face.
Granular black patina, locally flaked.
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Better known for their buffalo masks, the Chamba communicated with the spirit world through these statues. However, their functions remain little known.
Settled since the seventeenth century on the southern bank of the Benue River in Nigeria, coming from the mountainous regions of the Cameroonian borders, the Chamba resisted the conquest attempts of the Fulani, nomads who settled in large numbers in northern Nigeria. They are known for their famous buffalo mask with its two flat jaws extending the head. The statuary, less frequent, is divided into protective figures ( tauwa , sing. tau ) which are kept in a box to the left of the concession entrance, and statues of ancestors, kona . The figures in couple refer to the universal theme of the primordial couple.
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