Songye Figure

Africa | Democratic Republic of the Congo

Songye Figure

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Nkishi power figure

Carved wood and horn
Early 20th century
Height: 9 ½ in. (24 cm)

Ex collection Vander Straete, Brussels
Ex private collection, Brussels
Ex private collection, Paris

Songye figure 24 cm ex Vander Straete / Galerie Flak Price on request
On view at La Biennale
Grand Palais Ephémère, Paris
26 Nov. - 5 Dec. 2021

The Songye reside in the southeast of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, near the Lomami River in Central Africa. The political organization of the Songye is structured around the personality of their chief, a holy, benevolent figure endowed with magical-religious power. Secret societies structure social, political and religious life. Fetishes, amulets (boanga or nganga) and power figures (nkishi) are omnipresent among the Songye.
This figure with impressive volumes is in the same style (Eki) as two statuettes published in the reference book "La redoutable statuaire Songye" by François Neyt, plates 40 & 41.
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