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Old kuyu ancestor figurine - Wood - Congo

Lot reference 30526869

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Good condition, used with some signs of wear

Object: Old kuyu ancestor figurine
Region/ country: Congo
Material: Wood
Condition: Good condition, used with some signs of wear
Sold with stand: No
Dimensions: 45×13×45 cm

Formerly, the Kuyu who live in the west of the Republic of Congo, would consider that they descended from the panther, whereas those from the east worshipped a sacred snake as their ancestor, a sort of viper named Djo. The cult honouring it depicted the myth of the origins, in which the sacred animal appeared as the creator of the universe. Worship dances of the kiephe-kiephe involved figures presenting the most often arms placed along the bust, ending with hands presenting webbed fingers. The drawings on the arms or on the bust remind the skin of a snake. Motifs in the shape of cowry shells - these shells symbolise protection - ornament a hairdo, a forehead and a dress.
The facial features confer to the piece a disturbing aspect, of half-human, half-animal creatures, which the Kuyu sculptures seem to embody.

The presence of a monkey perched on the head of the figure presented here reminds the kinship between men and this animal. For the Kuyu, the monkey is closely related to the ritual universe. During the initiation of boys, the officiant would rub their faces with the skin of this animal, in order to open their eyes to the invisible world.

Private collection.

Fr user-4dc663b  

Catawiki member since May 24, 2019, received 16 reviews in total (16 in last 12 months)

Feedback score: 87.5% (16 reviews)
(last 12 months)
  • Please note: some elements on this page have been translated automatically.
    Fast delivery and very well packed and protected. Reliable.
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    kuiperlo November 14, 2019

  • Smooth & Easy

    user-38b9a94 November 13, 2019

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    rien à dire sur l'objet mais il a fallu mettre en demeure le vendeur de livrer l'objet car celui le l'avait pas envoyé 2 semaines après le paiement et ce, malgré les relances de catawiki.
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    user-e326c7b October 24, 2019

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    Dentro da descrição. Peça muito bem acondicionada.
    Estou agradecido
    José Furtado
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    user-5799582 October 2, 2019

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    Entrega muito rápida . Embalagem cuidada. Peça muito interessante.
    Cumprimentos ao vendedor.
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    user-2917ccc October 2, 2019

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    Une corne a été cassée et mal repeinte. Les perles du bas ont été changées et grossièrement recollées. La description ne fait pas part de ces défauts. Le vendeur ne répond plus aux messages... dégoûté
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    user-e326c7b September 9, 2019

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    Spedizione rapida ed accurata. Oggetto come descritto. il Venditore non ha risposto al messaggio di richiesta informazioni ma esperienza comunque positiva.
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    oresid August 24, 2019

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    ok, bonne réception, bon emballage
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    pat78000 August 9, 2019

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    Everything ok. Fast delivery, very well packed.
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    Paulo-11 August 6, 2019

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    Alles perfekt ! Gerne wieder !! ???
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    user-d0df2bf July 20, 2019

  • Please note: some elements on this page have been translated automatically.
    imballaggio e spedizione rapida ed accurata. Oggetto come da foto.
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    oresid June 17, 2019

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    masque bien reçu. merci belle qualité. très beau masque
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    NicolasMoser June 13, 2019

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