Items & Description
(1) FETISH FIGURE
COUNTRY: CHAD, CENTRAL AFRICA
SIZE: 5cm x 11cm x 35cm
For protection and good luck.
(2) LUBA HEADREST
ORIGIN: CENTRAL AFRICA
SIZE: 25cm x 8.5cm x 26.7cm
The Luba people, or Baluba, are one of the Bantu peoples of Central Africa, and the largest ethnic group in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They are native to the Katanga, Kasai, and Maniema regions which were historic provinces of present-day Democratic Republic of the Congo. The traditional carvings are for ancestor and spirit cults, for initiation, medical and divination purposes.
(3) HELMET FOR ODODUA RITUAL
ORIGIN: BENIN, NEGERIA
SIZE: 16.5cm x 17cm 30
In addition to his executive powers and duties, King Oba of Benin also performed a number of rituals throughout the year. Guilds of specialists such as drummers, shield-bearers, carvers, brass-casters and weavers provided regalia and ritual objects.
The cycle of ceremonies coincides with the agricultural cycle, but they are also concerned with the strengthening of the kingdom.This brass helmet is used in the Ododua ritual, in honour of the father of Oranmiyan, the legendary founder of the ruling dynasty. The dance is performed by seven masqueraders who wear brass helmets and carry ceremonial swords to signify their high status. They dance back and forth before the Oba seven times as a sign of their commitment and loyalty.
(4) CEREMONIAL SHIELD OF KIKUYU
MATERIAL: WOOD, BARK
ORIGIN: KENYA, EAST AFRICA
SIZE: 20cm x 10cm x 40cm
When the English invaded what is now present-day Kenya, instead of meeting resistance from the Maasai, as they had expected, they had to fight the kikuyu warriors. Given the superiority of firearms, the struggle was brief, but it left a deep mark in the collective memory of the kikuyu.
The shields are painted in geometric patterns on both sides the patterns way depending on the group of initiates; often the design on the back recalls an eye with eyelid.The shields that the warriors used in their initiation dances are made of wood or bark, unlike those used in war, which are made of animal bide.The back of the shields has a cavity for the arm, and thus is moved by flexing the arm, not the hand.
(5) BENIN PLAQUE
ORIGIN: NIGERIA, CENTRAL AFRICA
SIZE: 12.5cm x 4cm x 17.8cm
A signature art piece of Benin when the King (Benin Oba) is shielded from
the sun by loyal subjects.
(6) GROUP OF THREE
ORIGIN: BENIN, WEST AFRICA
Almost all of the art in Benin Kingdom was created to honor the King Oba who has reigned with his ancestors from the 15th century. Each piece is still sculpted by hand and then cast in bronze through the lost wax process. Figures that do not depict the king show members of his court.
(7) CAST PLAQUE
ORIGIN: NIGERIA, WEST AFRICA
SIZE: 15.5cm x 7.8cm x 25cm
This Plaque is from a ruling group of princes and chiefs in Nigeria.
(8) FANG TRIBE DOOR LOCK
ORIGIN: GABON, ATLANTIC COAST EQUATORIAL AFRICA
SIZE: 36cm x 5cm x 35.5cm
Fang people usually attached guardian figure to wooden boxes containing bones of their ancestors. Ancestral bones are believed to have the power of the dead person equal to his power when he is still living.
(9) COMB WITH MALE AND FEMALE HANDLE
ORIGIN: BENIN, WEST AFRICA
SIZE: 10cm x 10.5cm x 33.5cm
This traditional African comb signifies status, affiliation, and religion. Human figures on top of combs define ownership status.