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Tribal art > African Statues > Statue Tabwa

Tabwa ancestor statue (N° 15056)

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 independence thanks to the wealth provided by the ivory trade. Just as the influence of the Luba is noticeable in the societies and rites of the Tabwa, the Tanzanian tribes have also marked the tabwa statuary with regard to geometric decorative motifs. This fetish wears linear checkerboard scarifications on the torso and face, its skull also sporting a headdress hatched with small diamonds. The figure stands, legs half bent, on a small circular base, and with his two hands laid flat around his abdomen, he highlights his prominent navel, evoking the importance of lineage, transmission, and seat of knowledge. Very beautiful old statuette with chocolate patina, ageing marks, gaps and desications.  

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Originex-collection belge
EthnyTabwa
CountryCongo
Material(s)wood
Height34
Width9
Weight0.51 Kg
Estimated datingcirca 1950

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