Tribal art > African Statues > Virgo Kongo
Virgo Kongo (N° 19479)
Ex-collection African tribal art from Belgium.
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Inspired by Christian religious subjects, this African sculpture depicting a saint from the Catholic liturgy draped in a stole, praying with a rosary in hand, reflects the impact of the Christianization of the kongo. When these objects were not made for a local parish, they were frequently reused in fetishistic cults for diviners and chiefs. Statues of virgins formed the tops of canes of authority mvwala.
Carved out of a rectangular block, the sculpture of a figure standing on a pedestal reveals, under the veil, only the face and arms of the effigy in a prayerful attitude. Dark brown patina, satin, locally abraded.
The Vili, the Lâri, the Sûndi, the Woyo, the Bembé, the Bwende, the Yombé and the Kôngo formed the group Kôngo, led by the king Ntotela. Their kingdom reached its apogee in the 16th century with the trade of ivory, copper and slaves. With the same beliefs and traditions, they produced a statuary with codified gestures related to their vision of the world.
The sorcerers nganga , both healers, were in charge of religious activities and mediation towards the God called Nzambi through consecrated figures. To this end, individual protective figures nkisis, to protect themselves from witchcraft and various plagues, were made and charged by the nganga with all the necessary ingredients to achieve this goal.