galerie Cecile Kerner tribalworld

a yaka female figure ,"biteki"

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Directory: Vintage Arts: Regional Art: African: Pre 1940: Item # 1294849
galerie Cecile Kerner
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14,rue des minimes Brussels 1000

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wood, lusterless brown patina, camwood powder "khula", massive conical head crest, plug-like projecting ears, the nose with broad alea situated at the tip of the chin, the stylized mouth at the neck, slightly dam., crack (backside), on plate; figures which are used as receptacles or supports for magical preparations are called "biteki". When they are charged with magical ingredients, the image becomes a particular type of "nkisi", the medicine-poison that "make ill" - "kukwata" or "make well" - "kubuka" by an invisible influence. The particular form of a statuette does not generally permit identification of its function, the kind of loading alone determines its purpose. Without these applied preparations which permeate the surface, or are insert into a ventral cavity, or are attached to or hang from the image, they are without meaning to the Yaka and Suku. The Yaka have their homeland, together with their neighbours, the Suku, in an almost rectangular area in the southwest of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Yaka and Suku call upon a common origin and also share common institutions in respect of chieftainship, prophesying, treatment of illness, and the initiation of young men - all being reflected in the artistic production of the two groups. H: 49 cm H: 19.3 inch Provenance Jean-Marc Desaive, Soumagne, Belgium Published in Renaud Riley, L' autonomie du fétiche chez les Yaka du Congo, Collection de Léo Maréchal et d' autres amateurs, Bruxelles 2012