Kongo figure

Africa | Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kongo figure

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Nkisi fetish

Late 19th century
Carved wood, glass and pigments
Height: 6 ¾ in – 17 cm

Provenance:
Ex collection Richard de Saint-Alphonse, Paris
Ex collection Christine Valluet & Yann Ferrandin, Paris
Ex collection Chambers, USA, acquired from Galerie Valluet in 1999
Ex collection Mark Eglinton, USA

Published: Paris Tribal, 2023
Kongo figure 18 cm / Galerie Flak Price on request
Kongo sacred sculptures called minkisi (sing. nkisi) are among the most powerful and refined of all Sub-Saharan art forms, and rank among the iconic genres of African art.
On the occasion of the 2015 exhibition Kongo: Power and Majesty, held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Alisa LaGamma noted that "the most influential class of Kongo minkisi often took the form of formidable wood figures bristling with added hardware.[...] Along the coast, from northern Angola to southern Gabon, they were known as mbau, or 'ready to fight', while in the interior as far as Kinshasa they were called n'kondi (pl. minkondi), or 'hunter'.
The miniature power figure presented here is imbued with both strength and sensitivity.

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