Tribal art > African Statues > Lobe figurines
Lobe figurines (N° 18298)
This Lobi figure embodies a bateba or lineage ancestor. Its straight body, whose right-angle arms are welded to the bust, has long parallel legs. The hands are gathered under the abdomen. Satin patina, scattered erosions and dorsal crack.
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The populations of the same cultural region, grouped under the name lobi, make up one-fifth of the inhabitants of Burkina Faso. Few in Ghana, some of them also live in northern Côte d'Ivoire. It was at the end of the 18th century that the Lobi, coming from northern Ghana, settled among the indigenous Thuna and Puguli, the Dagara, the Dian, the Gan and the Birifor. The Lobi believe in a creator God named Thangba Thu , to whom they address through the worship of many intermediate spirits, the Thil, the latter being supposed to protect them, with the help of the soothsayer, from a host of plagues. Bush geniuses, red-haired beings called Kontuor, are also supposed to help them. To communicate with men, the different Thils ask for bateba sculptures in order to be incarnated. Various sacred altars are erected around the lobi houses. The sanctuary of the family home is called the Thildu, where tribal sculptures of wood, iron or brass, statues of ancestors and batebas are grouped.
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