H : 34 cm.
Wood, earth, iron
and composite materials
Musée Dapper - Paris
Spreading over both sides of the Congo-Zaïre border,
the Bakongos constitute a powerful nation with a proud history. The statuettes,
whose bestowed magical powers are often enclosed in two reliquaries, are known
as "nkisis". This particular nkisi, intended by the nganga (medecine
man) for private use, stands out by the quality of the face set between two
reliquaries inserted with mirrors on the forehead and the torso. The full
red-tainted faintly smiling lips, the wide-open eyes set in clear whites, the
delicate modeling of chin and cheek-bones and fine pearling of the eye-brows
bestow upon this figure a strong presence of humanity and good will.
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