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Čís. položky 130


Lega, Dem. Rep. of Congo: A ‘stake’ or an ‘elephant rib’ with a head, a ritual object of the Bwami society of the Lega, made of very old ivory, 19th century.


Lega, Dem. Rep. of Congo: A ‘stake’ or an ‘elephant rib’ with a head, a ritual object of the Bwami society of the Lega, made of very old ivory, 19th century. - Stammeskunst/Tribal-Art

Among the Lega, in eastern Congo, the Bwami society presides over the tribe’s social and religious life. Virtually every Lega belongs to this society, with 6 ranks for men and 3 ranks for women. Ritual objects made of ivory, such as small masks, figures, animals, spoons, knives, flutes, as well as ‘stakes’ surmounted by a head, such as the present one, are reserved exclusively for men of the highest rank, ‘Kindi’!
These ‘stakes’, also known as ‘elephant ribs’, are part of the death ritual. This is because the mighty elephant is a venerated animal among the Lega.
They also have a saying about elephants in connection with their Bwami society: ‘Where an elephant died and rotted, many a rib shall be found’.
With reference to the Bwami society, this saying acquires the following meaning: when an important member of the Bwami society dies, his valuable material goods (the ‘ribs’) are distributed among the remaining Bwami members.
The present Lega stake, with a neck, a head and a hole on the crown, is fascinating not only because of its stylistically perfect execution in typical Lega style – with heart-shaped concave face, protruding coffee bean eyes and a long, narrow nose – but also, and mainly, thanks to the visibly old age of the ivory from which it is carved! The material of this piece has already darkened to red-brown and black – which suggests stunningly old age! A rare piece with extremely old shiny patina as a result of protracted use. Some pieces broken off in the lower section.
19th century or earlier. H: 37 cm. (ME) ASA

Provenance: Jo Christiaens, Bruges, Belgium.

Lit.: 'L'art des Lega. Secrets d'ivoire', catalogue Musée du Quai Branly, Paris, fig. 78–82; 'Joyaux Lega' by Benoit Rousseau, fig. 26, 48, 50.

Expert: Prof. Erwin Melchardt Prof. Erwin Melchardt
+43-1-515 60-465

erwin.melchardt@dorotheum.at

26.05.2015 - 15:00

Odhadní cena:
EUR 5.000,- do EUR 6.000,-

Lega, Dem. Rep. of Congo: A ‘stake’ or an ‘elephant rib’ with a head, a ritual object of the Bwami society of the Lega, made of very old ivory, 19th century.


Among the Lega, in eastern Congo, the Bwami society presides over the tribe’s social and religious life. Virtually every Lega belongs to this society, with 6 ranks for men and 3 ranks for women. Ritual objects made of ivory, such as small masks, figures, animals, spoons, knives, flutes, as well as ‘stakes’ surmounted by a head, such as the present one, are reserved exclusively for men of the highest rank, ‘Kindi’!
These ‘stakes’, also known as ‘elephant ribs’, are part of the death ritual. This is because the mighty elephant is a venerated animal among the Lega.
They also have a saying about elephants in connection with their Bwami society: ‘Where an elephant died and rotted, many a rib shall be found’.
With reference to the Bwami society, this saying acquires the following meaning: when an important member of the Bwami society dies, his valuable material goods (the ‘ribs’) are distributed among the remaining Bwami members.
The present Lega stake, with a neck, a head and a hole on the crown, is fascinating not only because of its stylistically perfect execution in typical Lega style – with heart-shaped concave face, protruding coffee bean eyes and a long, narrow nose – but also, and mainly, thanks to the visibly old age of the ivory from which it is carved! The material of this piece has already darkened to red-brown and black – which suggests stunningly old age! A rare piece with extremely old shiny patina as a result of protracted use. Some pieces broken off in the lower section.
19th century or earlier. H: 37 cm. (ME) ASA

Provenance: Jo Christiaens, Bruges, Belgium.

Lit.: 'L'art des Lega. Secrets d'ivoire', catalogue Musée du Quai Branly, Paris, fig. 78–82; 'Joyaux Lega' by Benoit Rousseau, fig. 26, 48, 50.

Expert: Prof. Erwin Melchardt Prof. Erwin Melchardt
+43-1-515 60-465

erwin.melchardt@dorotheum.at


Horká linka kupujících Po-Pá: 9.00 - 18.00
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+43 1 515 60 200
Aukce: Stammeskunst/Tribal-Art
Datum: 26.05.2015 - 15:00
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Prohlídka: 20.05. - 26.05.2015