Tribal art > African Statues > Statue Tschokwe
Statue Tschokwe (N° 19289)
Ex-collection of African American tribal art.
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This Chokwe statue, generally associated with the therapeutic cult of type Hamba, embodies a female ancestor supposed to guarantee fecundity or healing. These figures were placed around the muyombo altar, a tree at the foot of which sacrifices and offerings were once made. Sculptures such as figures made from sticks or poles ( mbunji or mbanji ), planted in the ground, were also included. Related ethnic groups had this same type of altar, a witness before which rituals, oaths, and important transactions were concluded.
The scarification of the face are those that adorn the mask Mukishi wa Mwana Pwo worn during Mukanda initiation ceremonies, associated with fertility and fecundity. The statue and its headdress are sheathed with a textile of which it substitutes shreds. Residual inlays of kaolin. Dense wood. Cracks of desiccation.
Peacefully settled in eastern Angola until the 16th century, the Chokwé were then subjected to the Lunda Empire from which they inherited a new hierarchical system and the sacredness of power. Nevertheless, the Chokwé never fully adopted these new social and political contributions. Three centuries later, the Chokwé eventually seized the capital of the Lunda weakened by internal conflicts, thus contributing to the dismantling of the kingdom. The Chokwé did not have centralized power but large chieftaincies. They were the ones that attracted artists who wanted to put their know-how at the exclusive service of the court. The artists created so many varied pieces of such quality that the Lunda court employed only them.
Source: "Chokwe", B. Wastiau; "Chokwe and their Bantu Neighbours" ed.J. David and G. Merzeder.
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|Origin||ex-collection Caldwell - USA|
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