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Tribal art - African Statues:

In the tradition, the statue allows to represent what is invisible. In bronze in the kingdom of Benin, arms raised towards the sky by the Dogon to invoke rain, fetishes in the Congo, statues are the art of African blacksmiths. Sometimes worked on malleable wood, the statuary represents dolls, twins or even ancestors, with sometimes hard, elongated features and sour contours. The figures are raised, seated, with their arms close to their bodies or towards the heavens.


Dogon Bronze
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Tribal art > African bronze > Dogon Bronze

African art Dogon
Witness to the bronze sculpture of the Dogons, this subject offers a characteristic slender morphology. The character illustrates a protective ancestor, or a mythical being of Dogon cosmogony. Pretty locally ocher light green patina.
The Dogon are a people renowned for their cosmogony, their myths and legends, living in the south-west of the bend of the Niger in the Mopti region of Mali and part of the north of the The villages are often perched on top of the scree on the side of the hills, according to a unique architecture. The history of Dogon migrations and settlements (about ten main groups, about fifteen different languages) involves several hypotheses. For some historians, the Dogon would have fled from an area west of their current location, ...


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OviMbundu Statue
Tribal art > African Statues > OviMbundu Statue

African sculpture of a young OviMbundu woman generally devoted to the female initiation rituals of young nyaneka girls following the efuko ritual, in connection with fertility or divination. Brown satin patina, desication cracks, alterations.
It is on the Benguela plateau in Angola that the Ovimbudu, Ovimbundu, have been established for several centuries, made up of farmers and breeders. Forming the largest ethnic group in Angola, they belong to Bantu speakers, such as Nyaneka, Handa, Nkhumbi, and other groups from the region of Huila, or Wila. Their statuary made in light wood is relatively restrained.

Ref. : "Black African tribal art" ed. Assouline; "Treasures of Africa" Museum of Tervuren.


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390.00

Head Ngbandi
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Tribal art > African Statues > Head Ngbandi

Ex-collection African tribal art American.
.This fine-featured head is thought to have come from a carved Ngbirondo figure embodying a family ancestor. Funerary statues were also used by the Ngbandi, and sculptures of a couple yangba and his sister, equivalent to the Seto and Nabo ancestors of the Ngbaka.
The pointed chin and scarification on the bridge of the nose are characteristic of the ethnic group. Dense black patina, numerous erosions. Height on base: 41 cm.
The Ngbaka form a homogeneous people from the northwest of the D.R.C., south of the Ubangui. The Ngbandi live in the east ( on the left bank of the Ubangi) and the Ngombe in the south. The initiation of youth, "gaza" or "ganza" (which gives strength) among the Ngbaka and Ngbandi, has many similarities, ...


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Chokwe statue
Tribal art > African Statues > Chokwe statue

Sculpted with mastery, this work glorifies the ancestor and mythical hero founder of the ethnic group, Chibinda Ilunga. The chief, with oversized palms and feet, has an impressive noble headdress. Easily recognizable thanks to this ample headdress with curved side fins (cipenya-mutwe), a wicker frame covered with fabric, brass, leather, and beads, he had taught his people the art of hunting.
The dignitaries presented themselves cross-legged in a suit, which is confirmed by an African proverb: "The elder sitting cross-legged wishes to be greeted with respect" By alluding to the circle of his crossed legs, the chief conveys the blessings of a full orbit life." ("The Kongo gesture", ed. Dapper Museum)
The leader claps his hands as a sign of welcome and to signify his interest ...


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675.00

Songye statue
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Tribal art > African fetish > Songye statue

African fetish of the Songye whose face takes up the structure of the kifwebe mask of the Bwadi ka bifwebe society, but whose hairstyle is embellished with small horns. The sculpture is "desacralized", absence of ritual accessories and of the magic charge whose reddish traces testify to the existence. Black satin patina, cracks and traces of xylophages now eradicated.

The fetish Songye, magic sculpture Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi), plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens 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 settle in Kasai, Katanga and South Kivu. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their ...


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Zigua figure
Tribal art > African Statues > Zigua figure

African statuette depicting a small figure in a frontal, straight posture, swaddled in textile then coated with dark crusty materials.
Among the Zigua, this type of sculpture served as a support for initiation. The Sukuma of northern Tanzania use similar figures.
This piece of tribal art comes from the northeastern region of Tanzania, bordering Kenya, facing the Indian Ocean, where the Paré, Shamba, Zigua, and Mbugu tribes live. A relative homogeneity characterizes the productions of these groups, recalling some of the Madagascans and Bataks with whom, via maritime trade, contact could once have been established. This sculpture was probably used for didactic purposes during male initiations. She could also embody an ancestor or a spirit.


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390.00

Calao Senufo
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Tribal art > African Statues > Calao Senufo

Large African animal sculpture that refers to the primordial bird that is one of the five animals of the Senufo cosmogony, the first stage of Senufo creation, the hornbill. It is evoked for morphological and behavioral criteria. The tapered beak is "interpreted as the representation of the male sexual organ" perpetuating the life of the community. The patina is polychrome. Erosions on the base and minimal cracks.
Linked to the Poro society which initiated young boys from the age of seven in a succession of three cycles lasting seven years, this sculpture of Setien was placed in the sacred enclosure , where , despite its weight, carried on the head during a procession. The great initiates consider his bulging belly as the spiritual gestation of newcomers within the Poro. Poro is ...


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Dogon statue
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Tribal art > African Statues > Dogon statue

French African tribal art collection.
Small Dogon altar figure, with a flat face extending to the center of the bust. A posture of devotion for this figure of ancestor coated with a black crusty patina resulting from periodic ritual unctions.
Carved for the most part on commission by a family, Dogon statues can also be the object of worship by the entire community when they commemorate, for example, the founding of the village. However, little is known about their functions. Alongside Islam, Dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lebe, relating to fertility, under the spiritual authority of the Hogon; the Wagem, ancestor worship under the authority of the patriarch; the Binou invoking the spirit world and led by the Binou priest; and the mask society ...


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Yoruba figure
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Tribal art > African Statues > Yoruba figure

This African sculpture naturalistic, allowing according to the Yoruba communication with the afterlife, features as a maternal figure one of the many female goddesses, the earth goddess Onilé ("owner of the House"), guarantor of longevity, peace, and resources, and linked to the powerful Ogboni society among the Yoruba Egba and Ijebu. It could also symbolize Orunmila , goddess of divination.
Intended to be enthroned on an altar, she was worshipped by members of the powerful Ogboni, or Osugbo, society in charge of justice.
Satin polychrome patina, abrasions.
Centered on the veneration of its gods, or orisà, the Yoruba religion relies on artistic sculptures with coded messages (aroko). The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu arose following the demise of the Ife ...


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Head Fang
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Tribal art > African Statues > Head Fang

African art and funerary rites
A head with inlaid pupils, offering a heart-shaped face under a wide forehead, a rectangular mouth projecting forward, and a helmet-like headdress are some of the characteristics of the Ntumu style. This type of sculpture fulfilled the same function as the byeri statuettes. Dark oiled patina, eroded wood.
Among the Fang of Cameroon and Gabon, each family has a "Byeri", or reliquary box, in which the bones of the ancestors are kept. These boxes were kept by the oldest man in the village, the "esa". The reliquary boxes were surmounted by a statue or a head that acted as the guardian of the "byeri" boxes. These were kept in a dark corner of the box, and were meant to divert evil influences to someone else. They were also used during the ...


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Dogon statue
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Tribal art > African Statues > Dogon statue

These protective mythical figures probably evoke the primordial couple or mythical twins, associated with the Nommos, at the origin of Dogon creation. Sitting on a semicircular base, they present a narrow morphology contrasting with a shell-like chest. The heads show a Bambara influence. Thick granular patina, satin surface. Ochre residue, powdery, on the base. Carved for the most part on commission by a family, Dogon statues can also be the object of worship by the entire community when they commemorate, for example, the founding of the village. However, little is known about their functions. In parallel with Islam, Dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lebe, relating to fertility, under the spiritual authority of the Hogon, the Wagem, ancestor ...


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Dogon Statuette
Tribal art > African Statues > Dogon Statuette

Collection of African Tribal Art Claude Auge Dogon statuette anchored in a circular block. The arms are missing, isolating narrow shoulders. A hand remains on the thin bust marked with irregular reliefs. A crest underlines the head with erased features, a labret pointing discreetly at the level of the chin. A notch draws a female sex. In African art, this type of sculpture associated with an individual cult adorned the Dogon family altar. Grainy black patina. Abrasions.

Carved for the most part on order placed by a family, the Dogon statues can also be the object of worship on the part of the whole community. However, their functions remain little known. Alongside Islam, Dogon religious rites are organized around four main cults: the Lébé, relating to fertility, under the ...


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1880.00

Kwere Statue
Tribal art > African Statues > Kwere Statue

Wearing braids gathered in voluminous double crests typical of the Kwere, the sculpture depicts a woman of athletic constitution, pregnant, perched on high legs. The pupils are encrusted with pearls.
The Zaramo and the tribes that surround them, such as the Kwéré and the Doé, have designed dolls and more rarely anthropomorphic figures generally associated with fertility, but to which other virtues would be attributed. Their first role is played during the period of confinement of the young initiate Zaramo. The novice will behave towards the object as with a child, and will dance with it during the closing ceremonies of the initiation. In case the young woman does not conceive, she will adopt the "child". Among the Zaramo, this carved motif named Mwana Hiti is taken up at the top ...


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450.00

Mangbetu figure
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Tribal art > African Statues > Mangbetu figure


Ancestor figure represented naked, carried by oversized feet. The traced geometric patterns evoke the body paintings and tribal scarifications of the Mangbetu, analogous to those of the Asua pygmies with whom the tribe maintained relations. These varied according to the circumstances. The fan hairstyle was worn by the Mangbetu: from an early age, children suffered compression of the cranium by means of raffia ties. Later the Mangbetu would "knit" their hair on wicker strands and apply a headband to the forehead in order to extract the hair and produce that particular headdress which accentuates the elongation of the head. The ancients call these figures of ancestors stored out of sight and comparable to those belonging to their secret society nebeli beli. Dark satin patina. ...


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Songye figure
Tribal art > African fetish > Songye figure

Sculpted figure Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi ) whose face with the features of the kifwebe mask is underlined with metal sheets. The statue is equipped with a bishimba magic charge inserted into the cavity of the skull. Various addendums, metal, jerks, etc. were additionally supposed to enhance the power of the fetish.
Semi-matte dark patina. Desication cracks.

These protective fetishes for homes are among the most popular in Africa. The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between gods and men. The large specimens 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 settle on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal ...


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380.00

Lwena Box
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Tribal art > African Jar > Lwena Box

Male figure hollowed out halfway up, and whose lid is made up of the upper part of the body. The subject offers arms whose reduced size contrasts with the otherwise robust morphology. The features of the face, very stretched, are sculpted in low relief under a hat-shaped headdress. Shiny mahogany patina, desiccation cracks.
Of Lunda origin, the Lwena, Luena, emigrated from Angola to Zaire in the 19th century, repelled by the Chokwe. When some became slave traders, others, the Lovale, found refuge in Zambia. Their society is matrilineal, exogamous and polygamous. The Lwena became known for their sculptures embodying figures of deceased ancestors and chiefs, and their masks linked to the initiation rites of the mukanda . Their sculpture was largely influenced by that of the Chokwe.


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Dogon Tellem altar figure
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Tribal art > African Statues > Dogon figure

The tribal African statues of the Dogon can be the object of worship on behalf of the whole community when they commemorate, for example, the foundation of the village. These statues, sometimes embodying the nyama of the deceased, are placed on ancestor altars and participate in various rituals including those of the periods of seeds and harvests. This is a statuette of personal worship, with a dense, oily and slightly abraded patina, under which appears a light wood.
The figures with raised arms would symbolize a prayer to Amma to grant the rain necessary for all life. According to the sources, it would also be a gesture of contrition following the violation of a law that resulted in a drought. Sacrificial patina. The south of the plateau overlooking the Bandiagara ...


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Ewe Doll
Tribal art > African Dolls > Ewe Doll

Togolese version of the Ibedji fetish statuettes of the Yoruba of Nigeria, the doll carved in light bleached wood has abundant ornaments of colored pearls. Desication cracks, abrasions.
The Ewe regard the birth of twins called Venavi (or Venovi) as a happy omen. The latter must be treated identically and fairly. Both will be fed and washed at the same time and will wear the same clothes until puberty. If one of the two twins dies, the parents obtain a statuette intended to replace the deceased child and contact a specialist in order to activate its magical virtues.
She will be of the same sex as the child she represents and replaces but projects herself into the future that the child will not have known by displaying adult features.
Source: "Isn't she a doll?" E.L ...


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390.00

Baga Statue
Tribal art > African Statues > Baga Statue

Among the Baga, a spiritual entity is called Somtup, a male spirit at the head of the men's initiatory society. The women's association is under the direction of a-Bol, Somtup's wife. In relation to this spirit to which sacrifices were periodically offered, this female figure embodies the concept of local beauty, accentuating the braided hairstyle, the facial and body scarifications, bracelets and belt, roundness of the volumes. Glossy patina, losses and abrasions.
Mixed with the Nalu and the Landuman, the Baga live along the coasts of Guinea-Bissau in areas of swamps flooded six months a year. These Baga groups settled on the coast and living from rice growing are made up of seven sub-groups. After the abandonment of the rites following Islamization, colonization, or conversions ...


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490.00

Hopi Canoe
Tribal art > African Statues > Hopi Canoe

Collection primitive art belgian
Colorful witnesses to the traditions of the Hopi Indian peoples of Arizona, the carved Katsinam (sing. Kachina) objects are expressed during traditional dances accompanying the annual festivals in favor of the rain. Traditional Kachina dolls are, for the Amerindian Pueblo group (Hopi, Zuni, Tewa Village, Acoma Pueblo and Laguna Pueblo), educational tools offered to children at the end of ritual celebrations. These statuettes, embodying a great diversity of spirits, represent the katchina dancers whose colors are associated with the cardinal points. They are grouped here in a team of five statuettes carved in soft wood. The patina is matte and velvety, abrasions.


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950.00

Ambete Statue
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Tribal art > African Statues > Ambete Statue

Anthropomorphic figure associated with ancestor worship, carved in dense wood. Adorned with copper sheets offering a variety of fine decorative motifs evoking body marks and tribal paintings, it also sports a loincloth made of bells. The flat face has metal-rimmed hollow pupils and small parallel teeth. The posture would be one of those accompanying ceremonial dances.
Desication cracks, kaolin residues, erosions.
The Mbete, Ambete, form a tribe of Gabon, on the border of the Middle Congo, close to the Obamba and the Pounou, whose history has been marked by a long-term conflict against the Teke. They do not have a centralized political organization, practice ancestor worship without reliquary boxes, their statues frequently comprising a cavity fitted out for this purpose.


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