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Tribal art - Usual african items:

African everyday objects have become true works of art for Westerners. Used for ritual, ceremonial, or purely customary purposes on the African continent. They have never known the European artistic attraction, within the African population.


Awale Luba
Tribal art > Usual african items > Awale Luba

"Mboko cup-bearing" statues frame this game of the awalé type from the mancala family. The apron is hollowed out with twenty-four cells, laid out in four rows. Stones, seeds, pebbles or even shells formed the pawns. Matte light brown patina, abrasions and slight chips.


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650.00

Game of awale Mangbetu two-headed
Tribal art > Usual african items > Awale Mangbetu

Ex-collection Belgian African tribal art.
Creus of 28 alveoli, this awale game is part of the mancalas family of games. The foot is altered. The figurative motifs, in the form of carved heads, obey the stylistic canonical mangbetu and zande. Clear patina, slightly abraded. Small cracks. Established in the forest in northeastern Zaire, between Bomokandi and the River Uele, the Mangbetu kingdom was expressed through architectural works that fascinated European visitors in the 19th century. Their furniture, weapons, ornaments, pottery and statuary were imbued with a rare aesthetic quality. The Mangbetu story was based on the refinement of his court but also on cannibalistic customs. King Mangbetu Munza was so dubbed The cannibal king. The ethnologist G.A. Schweinfurth in 1870 described ...


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490.00

Hemba Calabash
Tribal art > Usual african items > Hemba Calabash

These sculptures bankishi (sing. nkishi ) were used within the framework of the bugabo , a society dedicated to hunting, healing and war. A male figure referring to the ancestors springs from a calabash around which is wrapped a cord accessorized with feathers and dried fruit. The object rattles when shaken. Dark patina.
Height with base: 27 cm.

The Hemba have long been subject to the neighboring Luba empire, which has had a certain influence on their culture, their religion and their art. Ancestor worship is central to Hemba society. Mastering sculpture with talent, the Hemba have mainly produced statues of singiti ancestors, embodying chiefs, local warriors, or lineage ancestors whom they venerate in order to appease the spirits mizimus . A wide variety of ...


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360.00

Yaka awale
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Yaka awale

Sculpted figure depicted kneeling, hands flat, back supporting an awale tray from the mancalas family, composed of thirty-two cells. Stones, seeds, pebbles or even shells formed the pawns. The object can be arranged vertically or horizontally. Satin patina.
Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, the Yaka society, now established on the banks of the Waamba in the south west of the DRC (Kasai Occidental), was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are nowadays an opportunity for the Yaka to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals using charms linked to the "khosi" institution. The initiation ceremony for young people is called n-khanda, which is found among the ...


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Nyamezi Calabash
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Tribal art > African Jar > Nyamezi Calabash

Container formed from the dried fruit of the calabash tree, on which a carved wooden stopper has been fitted. The head is encrusted with pearls representing the eyes, and oversized ears frame the pulled back hairstyle. Braided raffia strap.
The Luo, Kuria, Haya and Ziba, the Kéréwé, Karagwé, Sukuma and Nyamézi are established in the center west and the central region of Tanzania. The Nyamwezi, Nyamézi,("western people" and sometimes "moon people ") form the largest group among the tribes living in north central Tanzania. Coming from diverse origins, although sharing the same cultural specificities, their ritual and artistic production consequently presents very different formal aspects. The cult of ancestors and chiefs, of major importance within their culture, marked their ...


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Yaka Fly swatter
Tribal art > fly flap > Yaka Fly swatter

A prestigious object, this fly swatter features a finely chiseled "yiteke" miniature acting as a talisman. The figure is extended by a handle on which a cord is tied, attaching the horsehair and the fur constituting the whip. Glossy brown patina.

Hierarchical and authoritarian, made up of formidable warriors, Yaka society was governed by lineage leaders with the right to life and death over their subjects. Hunting and the prestige that results from it are the occasion nowadays, for the Yaka, to invoke the ancestors and to resort to rituals using charms. The society of initiation of young people is the n-khanda, found among the eastern Kongo (Chokwe, Luba, etc.), and which uses various charms and masks in order to ensure a vigorous lineage. The artistic productions of the ...


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390.00

Dogon altar
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Dogon altar

Dogon altar, made of a mass of clay in which miniature irons and ladders are stuck. Piece collected in the mid-20th century by Monsieur Arnaud, accompanying Alain Bilot, renowned collector of Dogon art during study trips to Mali. These objects decorated the niches of the Ginnas. ("Dogon" H.Blom , p.234) The Dogon blacksmiths form an endogamous caste among the Dogon called irim. Today they produce weapons, tools, and also work with wood. "Masters of fire" associated in Dogon cosmogony with the primordial beings "Nommo" created by the god Ama, they are also supposed to cure burns. Small metal objects, made using the lost ...


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Hemba anthropomorphic box
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Hemba Box

This lidded container depicts an ancestor, intermediate between men and gods, adopting a symbolic gesture, arms raised, one of the hands folded. A tiara engraved with lines delimits the shaved skull. The traditional sophisticated hairstyle, oiled and coated with red powder, then mounted on a raffia base, was organized at the back in cruciform element most often. The beard is associated with the wisdom and experience of the grandfather.
Generally made in iroko, these ritual sculptures were venerated by a particular clan and stored in funeral premises in the chief's house.
Patine golden brown oiled and velvety, very slight cracks. Erosions

The Hemba, established in southeastern Zaire, on the right bank of the Lualaba, have long been subject to the luba neighbour who ...


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Crucifix Kongo
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Crucifix Kongo

Among the Kongo chiefs at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the crucifix was used, among the chiefly regalia, as a symbol of the power of authority. A ceremony during the investiture of the chief required that the future ruler receive from the hands of a dignitary, during a codified ritual, a nkangi kiditu. This badge of power, inspired by ancient Christian crucifixes imported by the Portuguese in the 16th century, could also have a therapeutic function, and, in addition to various uses, be brandished during funeral ceremonies during which the object was subjected to libations. palm oil or palm wine.
Height on base: 28 cm.
The cross is not a motif specific to the Christian world, the ...


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Kongo Crucifix
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Kongo Crucifix

Among the Kongo chiefs at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the crucifix was used, among the chiefly regalia, as a symbol of the power of authority. A ceremony during the investiture of the chief required that the future ruler receive from the hands of a dignitary, during a codified ritual, a nkangi kiditu. This badge of power, inspired by ancient Christian crucifixes imported by the Portuguese in the 16th century, could also have a therapeutic function, and, in addition to various uses, be brandished during funeral ceremonies during which the object was subjected to libations. palm oil or palm wine.
The cross is not a motif specific to the Christian world, the Kongo consider that the ...


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Kongo box
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Tribal art > African Jar > Kongo box

Ointment box with lid sculpted in the round with the effigy pfemba, illustrating an African Kongo motherhood. The woman seated cross-legged, named phemba or pfemba, symbol of the mythical ancestor, would be associated with fertility cults. The child on her lap would embody the matrilineal transmission of power. Black satin patina.
The Solongo cultures of Angola and Yombé were largely influenced by the Kongo kingdom, from which they borrowed naturalistic statuary and religious rites by means of carved fetishes nkondo nkisi.
The Yombe are established on the west coast of Africa, in the south-west of the Republic of Congo and in Angola. Their statuary includes remarkable maternities whose use remains little known.


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Ngombe knife
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Ngombe knife

"Execution" knives are also parade weapons, such as this ngulu whose wooden handle is wrapped with a copper strip. Each side has fine decorative hatching. In northwestern Zaire, south of the Ubangi,live the 6000 Moswea-Ngombe of Bantu language. Their neighbors are the Ngbandi and the Ngbaka and various banda groups. They knew no god but expected favors from their ancestors, among them health and prosperity. Their throwing knives used for hunting were used as currency.
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Bidjogo arm disc
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Tribal art > Jewels > Bidjogo Ornament

Circular and flat, this bidjogo ornament is an adornment that was worn on the arm. It is coated with contrasting polychrome patterns, summarily applied.
Patina of use, matte, abrasions.
Height on base: 40 cm.
Their raids in large canoes along the African coasts forged the Bidjogos of the Bissagos Islands in Guinea Bissau a reputation as daring warriors. In order to exalt their qualities, the initiation ceremonies staged animal masks reflecting power, courage and agility, their dances matching the nature of the animal represented.
This population cultivates rice in the swampy regions, and also makes a living from fishing. Other zoomorphic masks are produced, some related to aquatic fauna, as well as triangular-faced statues embodying deities, named ...


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Crucifix Kongo Nkangi kiditu
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Tribal art > African Statues > Kongo Crucifix

Ex. Belgian African tribal art collection.
Among chiefs Kongo in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the crucifix held the place, among the chieftaincy regalia, of a symbol of power the authority. A ceremony at the investiture of the chief required the future ruler to receive from the hands of a dignitary, in a codified ritual, a nkangi kiditu . This badge of power, inspired by ancient Christian crucifixes imported by the Portuguese in the sixteenth century, could also have a therapeutic function, and, in addition to various uses, was brandished during funeral ceremonies in which the object was subjected to libations of oil or palm wine.
Desiccation cracks, satin patina.
The cross ...

Kongo Nkandi Kiditu crucifix in bronze
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Congo Crucifix

Among the Kongo chiefs at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the crucifix was used, among the chiefly regalia, as a symbol of the power of authority. A ceremony during the investiture of the chief required that the future ruler receive from the hands of a dignitary, during a codified ritual, a nkangi kiditu. This badge of power, inspired by ancient Christian crucifixes imported by the Portuguese in the 16th century, could also have a therapeutic function, and, in addition to various uses, be brandished during funeral ceremonies during which the object was subjected to libations. palm oil or palm wine.
The cross is not a motif specific to the Christian world, the Kongo consider that the four ...

Fang Sickle Knife
Tribal art > Usual african items > Fang Sickle

Former parade weapon, this sickle has a wooden handle with a lustrous patina. The blade has a grainy oxidized patina.
The Fang ethnic group, established in a region stretching from Yaoundé in Cameroon to Ogooué in Gabon, has never had political unity. Clan cohesion was maintained through religious and judicial associations such as so and ngil .


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380.00

Tsogho Reliquary Box
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Tribal art > African Jar > Tsogho Box

This box with handles was intended for the relics of an ancestor, the bust figure surmounting its lid reproducing the silhouette of the "garde" reliquary of the bwete, or bwiti , in the Mitsoghos. Desication cracks, shrapnel. Patine mate.
The Mitsogho ethnic group, Sogho, is established in a forested area on the right bank of the Ngoumé River, Ngounié, near the Kwele. The Bwiti company, which has a system of reliquaries comparable to that of the Fang and Kota, formed the cohesion of the matrilineal clans mitsogho. Their masks were displayed at the funeral, and stored in the male ebanza initiation house. Like the other etnies of Gabon, they practice the rites of the Bwiti which would have spread in this way among the coastal peoples. Their sculptural production is varied, in the ...


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Sickle Knife Banda
Tribal art > African Currencies > Banda Sickle

In African tribal art, throwing weapons and parade weapons were primitive currencies dedicated to commercial and social exchanges.
These objects in similar forms are found among the Gobu, the Mbugu, the Banda. According to the ethnic group the names vary: Bo, Nguindza or Guindza gbo as among the Banda.

Their shape places them in the category of "parade axes". Some more compact shapes also served as throwing knives.

The older ones will be made from a fairly light forged metal with a bare handle. The shapes and size vary from place to place.

This specimen has a handle entirely sheathed in copper wire, and the blade has discreet incisions and decorative hatching associated with human scarifications. The patina is grainy and velvety.


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450.00

Igitembe Tutsi cuff
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Tribal art > Jewels > Bracelet Tutsi

This functional adornment for archers was worn to the left to protect the forearm from bumps. In Rwanda, the Tutsi used a herb-covered pad, so wooden protections called igitembe were rare. Our model has an internal circumference of 8 cm, and has three rectangular metal inlays on each side. The surface of the wood is abraded by use. A crack runs through the center of the bracelet.
nomadic People, the Tutsi were particularly decimated by the Islamic slave trade and recurrent infighting. Population groups called "Bantous interlacustres", established between Lake Victoria and the Limpopo River, include the Ganda, Nyoro, Nkole, Soga, Toro, Hima, and the Tutsi Rwanda and Burundi. Their cultures have similarities, as do their artistic production and their everyday objects. The Tutsi raise ...


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Bamileke Bangwa ritual rattle
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Sonnailes Bangwa

The rich production of African art among the people of the Cameroonian Grassland is illustrated mainly by traditional wood carvings: commemorative sculptures of kings, queens, princesses and titled servants, as well as the parents of twins.
Within the large Bamileke people in western Cameroon, the Bangwa constitute a small kingdom consisting of nine chiefdoms. The influence of the Bamileke on the Bangwa statuary is notable for relatively comparable facial features and morphology.
Typical of Bamileke country, Bangwa statues often represent fertility but also power and fighting spirit. This male figure is indeed camped on bent knees, arms spread from the bust. This dynamic position announces a ritual dance, a calabash in one hand. The figure is adorned with noble attributes, such ...

Royal Hemba sword and its scabbard
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Tribal art > Usual african items > Hemba sword

The carved handle of the sword depicts a forefather singiti whose features appear very finely engraved. The faces are bordered by a frontal diadem and a tenuous beard collar in slight relief. The singiti refer to local chiefs, founders of royal lineages, or warlords. T he sword is engraved with discreet decorative motifs. Very beautiful object with a glossy black-brown patina, kaolin residues. Base on request in addition.
The Hemba, established in southeastern Zaire, on the right bank of the Lualaba, were for a long time subject to the neighboring Luba Empire, which had a definite influence on their culture, religion and art. Ancestor worship, whose effigies have long been attributed to the Luba, is central to hemba society. Genealogy is indeed the guarantor of ...





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