Power Figure
Luba/Kusu, Dem. Republic Congo, formerly Zaire, 19th Century
Previous Collection: Private NYC Collection acquired from William Arnett ( well known photographer; Authored notably " Three Rivers of Nigeria " for the High Museum.
Personal fetish figures were used to protect the individual from evil. This figure from the Luba/Kusu has a haunting quality; the face eroded as it is, is beautifully mysterious; especially in its profile. The overall sculpture is mostly obscured by erosion which must have taken decades because of the hard wood used to carve it; but serendipitously nature has enhanced this sculpture and brings it to another aesthetic plain that was never intended by the carver. The back of the head shows a classic design of a Luba/Kusu coiffure and the wide cavity in the head was once filled with "bilongo" magical materials, that could have consisted of horns; sticks; animal parts packed in with resin or even blood.
This figure stands 9.5 inches tall.
IN 11-5-12/ Price On Request