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Tribal art - Songye:




Songye Kifwebe Kilume mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye mask

Incised with striations that emphasize the arc of the eyelids and then extend horizontally across the temples, this mask is also engraved with broken lines on the lower 2/3. A wide black band runs from the mouth to the neck, responding to the dark-tinted organs and reinforcing the visual aspect of the latter.
Velvety smooth patina, abraded on protrusions. Desiccation cracks.  Three types of African Kifwebe masks are listed: the male (kilume) generally with a high crest, the female (kikashi) would present a more modest crest or even absent, and finally the largest incarnating power (kia ndoshi). 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 manner. Their history is ...


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Songye KIfwebe Mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

Large scale for this songye mask with large tricolour stripes tinged with natural pigments. The ridge of the nose extends towards the head of a majestic sagittal crest. The mouth points in parallelepiped. Eroded contours, cracks, grainy matte patina.
High on a base: 85 cm.
This types of African art mask Kifwebe are listed: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) would present a more modest crest or absent, and finally the greater embodying power (kia ndoshi). 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 way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. The Songyes have created ...


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Songye Kifwebe Ndoshi mask and costume
Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

This large African Songye mask, the kikashi, embodies a positive force. The half-closed palpebral slits are stretched toward the temples, the nose and mouth protruding rectangularly. The naso-frontal crest blends harmoniously with the forehead. Large circular bands are engraved on the surface. Chipped matte patina. Equipped with its raffia suit ( 100 cm) embroidered with seeds, extended on the back with a bunch of feathers.

Three variants of this mask Kifwebe ( pl. Bifwebe) or "chasing death"(Roberts),from the society of the same name, are distinguished: the masculine (kilume) generally with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest or even absent, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, seems to come from the ...

Large kifwebe mask kikashi Songye
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Tribal art > African mask > Kifwebe Mask

Ex-American tribal art collection.
This great African mask Songye, the kikashi, embodies a positive force. The palpebral, half-closed slits are stretched towards the temples, nose and mouth in rectangular protruding. The flat naso-frontal crest indicates that it is a female mask. Parallel lines are dug on the pigmented surface of white. Abrasions and cracks are worth noting. Imposing raffia beard attached to the contours of the object. Three variants of this mask Kifwebe (pl. Bifwebe) or 'chasing death' (Roberts), from the society of the same name, stand out: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest or absent, and finally the greatest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, appears to come from the ...

Songye Kifwebe Mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

The surface of this African mask features wide bands of contrasting colors. The bridge of the nose extends towards the head of a sagittal ridge. Like a beak, the parallelepiped mouth protrudes. Height on base: 63 cm.
 Three types of Kifwebe African art masks are listed: the masculine (kilume) generally with a high peak, the feminine (kikashi) would present a more modest peak or even absent, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). In the sixteenth century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba River. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. The Songyes have created impressive statues with powerful features ...


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Songye Nkisi fetish statue
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Tribal art > African fetish > Songye Fetish

African statue Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi )of the Songye, which has a head with stylized features like the kifwebe mask. The arms are positioned around a protruding umbilicus pointing beneath the textile of a red dress, providing, as was customary, space to grasp the sculpture with metal hooks. Here, the magical charge bishimba has probably been introduced at the top of the head from which a horn rises. Various ritual accessories also embellish the sculpture. Golden brown speckled patina. Eroded base.br> These protection fetishes for homes are among the most popular in Africa. The Nkisi plays the role of mediator between god and men, responsible for protecting against various evils. The larger figures are the collective property of an entire village, and the smaller figures ...


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Songye Nkisi fetish statuette
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Tribal art > African fetish > Songye Fetish

This carved figure Nkisi, nkishi (pl. mankishi )is embellished with feathers at the place where the top horn used to be. Her angular face is powerfully expressive. The magic charge bishimba was introduced into the skull cavity if the abdomen did not have it. The power of the fetish would be further enhanced by the presence of accessories, metal rings in this case. Light wood coated with a locally abraded black patina.
These protection 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 sixteenth century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left ...

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Tabouret Songye
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Tribal art > African Chair > Songye Seat

A female figure whose face takes the form of the mask Kifwebe plays here the role of caryatide. Another incongruity is that excessive feet develop on a damaged circular promontory, just like the seat. This type of seat could also serve as a pedestal for fetishes mankishi (sing. nkishi). Three variants of this mask Kifwebe (pl. Bifwebe) or "Chasing the mort" (Roberts) stand out: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest see absent, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, appears to originate from the adjacent area between the northern Luba and the Southeastern Songye. They are worn with a long suit and a long beard made of natural fibers, absent on this copy, during the most important ...


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Kifwebe Songye Mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

African art among the Songyes.
Named Kifwebe or 'wood mask', (plural Bifwebe), the same type of which was produced by both the Luba and the Songye, this tribal mask imposes by its masterful dimensions. The term Kifwebe refers to the mask, the society of masks, and the wearer of the mask belonging to the secret male society bwadi bwa kifwebe . There are three variants: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest or absent, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This mask comes from a three-generational Belgian collection, acquired in various international galleries and during the professional travels of G. Mercier, consultant for the Solvay group, who died in the 1980s. Exceptional patina, internal traces of use.


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Fétiche Songye Nkisi
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Tribal art > African fetish > Songye Fetish

This powerful ritual figure of the Songye, desecrated, was moved by rods placed under the arms. The horn filled with magic substances that rose from his skull was removed. The face borrows the appearance of the Songye Kifwebe mask. The cup that had various ingredients is also empty.
Golden brown glossy patina.
Three variants of this mask Kifwebe (pl. Bifwebe) or "chasing the mort" (Roberts) stand out: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest see absent, and finally the greatest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, appears to originate from the adjacent area between the northern Luba and the Southeastern Songye. Various ingredients were introduced into the statue's abdomen, into the horn, ...


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Songye Nkishi Fetish
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Tribal art > African fetish > Statue Songye

Always intriguing by the diversity of their magical paraphernalia, the African fetishes mankishi (plu.) of Songye, specialists in the field. The antelope horn, usually loaded with bishimba in which magical ingredients mingle, emerges from the top, between the janiform faces cut in the image of bifwebe masks. A third masked face takes the place of the abdomen. Among the various magical accessories added by the ritualist named nganga, we see necklaces, inlays of upholstery nails, feathers, hooks and metal bells Each of them played a role in guarding against witchcraft. Around the hips, a little feline fur. Grainy matte patina, polychrome highlights.
The Songye came from the Shaba region of the DRC and settled along the Lualaba River in the middle of the savannah and forests. Their ...


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Songye Kifwebe Kilume Mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

Divided into large contrasting stripes, this songye mask has an imposing sagittal crest. The eyelids stretch towards the temples. Like a beak, the parallelepiped mouth is projected. Patina matte abrased. Desication crack. Height on a base: 110 cm.
This types of African Kifwebe masks are listed: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) would present a more modest or absent crest, and finally the greater embodying power (kia ndoshi). 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 way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba to whom they are related through common ancestors. The Songyes have created impressive statues with powerful features ...


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Songye Fetish
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Tribal art > African fetish > Songye Fetish

Receptacle of a healing force, this bust figure, with a thick circular base, was hollowed out in its center from the head of the character to the base. A magic charge was introduced by the soothsayer.\


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Divine Oracle Katatora/ Kashekesheke Songye
Tribal art > Usual african items > Katatora of Songye

Sculpture whose curved center forms a support for divination techniques. Its janiform iconography, in relation to kifwebe masks, symbolizes a double question: with regard to the world of the living, and towards ancestors. Medium brown patina, desication cracks.

The Songye and the neighbouring ethnic groups share many institutions, including those related to divinatory rites. Thus in some areas luba songye-style sculptures were dedicated to divination techniques. The nganga will interpret the signs of movement of objects placed on the flat surface and rubbed on the support, in order to propose a solution to the misfortunes of its client.
Sye came from the Shaba region of the DRC and settled between the Lualaba River and the Sankuru River in the middle of the savannah and ...

Great Mask Songye Kifwebe
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Tribal art > African mask > New product

African art among the Songye.


Named Kifwebe or "Boismasque", (plural Bifwebe), the same type of which was produced by both the Luba and Songye, this tribal mask imposes by its masterful dimensions. The term Kifwebe refers to the mask, the mask society, and the mask wearer belonging to the secret male society bwadi bwa kifwebe .
There are three variants: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low or absent crest, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi).
Indigenous crack restorations. Patien burn clear abraded.
These African masks have holes on their outline set set shall be used for the most important ceremonies to attach a costume, including a voluminous beard made of natural fibres. The raffia ...


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Statuette Songye Nkisi
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Tribal art > African fetish > Statuette Songye

A fetish statuette of the Songye of harmonious proportions, depicting a figure supported by large feet perched on a circular base. The summit horn usually contained a magical charge introduced by thevine-healer. The action of therapeutic ingredients could be accompanied by different grey-greys in the form of metal quolifichets, textile shreds or shells and pearls, a specific role being attributed to each. Vegetable stems embellished with fur form here only a thin belt highlighting the hips of the fetish. Dark patina, desication cracks, dull areas.
The Songye came from the Shaba region of the DRC and settled between the Lualaba River and the Sankuru River in the middle of the savannah and forests. They are governed by the Yakitengé and local chiefs. The secret society Bwadi however, ...


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Kifwebe mask of Songye
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

This Songye, kikashi, African mask embodies a positive force. The palpebral, half-closed slits are stretched towards the temples, nose and mouth in rectangular protruding. The reduced naso-frontal crest indicates that it is a female mask. Parallel lines are dug on the pigmented surface of white. Abrasions and cracks are worth noting.
This variants of this mask Kifwebe (pl. Bifwebe) or 'chasing death' (Roberts), from the society of the same name, stand out: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) with a very low crest or absent, and finally the greatest embodying power (kia ndoshi). This type of mask, still used today, appears to come from the border area between the northern Luba and the Southeastern Songye. They are worn by a dancer Kifwebe in a ...


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Great Fetish Statue Songye Nkisi
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Tribal art > African Statues > Fétiche Nkisi

African statue Nkisi , nkishi (pl. mankishi) of Songye, it has a massive head in the image of the female mask kifwebe named kikashi. The arms are positioned around a bulbous abdomen pointing between a textile-wrapped bulge in which the magic load bishimba has been introduced and a skirt-loin of red fabric belted at the waist. The metallic necklace forms an additional magical accessory.
Patine mate, usual abrasions. Desication cracks. Eroded base.br-These protective fetishes for homes are among the most popular in Africa. Nkisi plays the role of mediator between God and humans, charged with protecting against different evils. Large specimens are the collective property of an entire village, and smaller figures belong to an individual or family. In the 16th century, the Songyes ...

Great Mask Songye Kikashi
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

This mask with an imprecative function, streaked with bleached grooves, would be feminine. The different areas of this type of mask (including the beard, the costume and the body of the wearer) attach a particular symbolism: the mouth for example would embody the beak of a bird and the fire of the sorcerer. The mask is always fitted with its plant fiber sill.
Filmed matte patina, red and black ochre highlights. br-
The Songye came from the Shaba region of the DRC and settled along the Lualaba River in the middle of the savannah and forests. They are governed by the yakitengé and by local leaders. The secret society Bwami however, counterbalances their power. Their male masks, with occult powers, were displayed during punitive and disciplinary expeditions. Their appearances ...


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Songye Kifwebe Mask
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Tribal art > African mask > Songye Mask

Three types of African art mask "Kifwebe" (or songye mask) are listed: the masculine (kilume) usually with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) would have a more modest or absent crest, and finally the largest embodying the (kia ndoshi).
The Songye sculptor had a high status within the society bwadi and also produced various objects of pageantry, but also of daily use, cuts, mortars, canes, etc. Also practiced by the Luba, the cult bwadi bwa kifwebe ("masque" in songye) acted as a secret police in favor of power, so as to control individuals through magic. Worn with a long suit and a long beard made of natural fibres, Kifwebe masks also appeared during crucial stages of initiation ceremonies at the new moon. The novice had to pass between the legs of the masked initiator of the ...


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Ritual statuette Songye Boanga
Tribal art > African fetish > Statuette Kakudji

Used as part of divinatory practices, this type of statuette-bust, here in a metal cup, in a gourd in most cases, is surrounded by small plant, mineral and animal elements. The bust is sculpted so that the object can be grasped under the arms with iron rods, just like the big fetishes. These magical sculptures are used by the Kusu, The Southern Songye and the Hemba. The face of the fetish is cut with the features of the kifwebe mask, a perforation remains on the skull, in which the tip of a horn was to be embedded.
The Songye came from the Shaba region of the DRC and settled between the Lualaba River and the Sankuru River in the middle of the savannah and forests. They are governed by the yakitengé and by local leaders. The secret society Bwadi however, counterbalances their power. ...


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