A Lega Janus Deity Figure - Wood, Plant fibers, rope, remains of feathers and dark green pigments. Some cracks in the wood ( see pictures)
H= 35 cm
Provenance= Gaetan Schoonbroodt, Verviers, Belgium.
This interesting Lega figure with two people standing back to back, could become the "mascotte" of your collection, or serve as a company Logo .
Lega sculptures are usually carved in a heart-shaped face with a slightly bulging forehead, and slit cowrie eyes, a nose with a beak-like base.
This Janus figure is strangely enough not covered in white clay called ‘pembe’ but completely covered through the use of green pigments.
Such Janus figures were often used during the initiation of the 7 levels Bwami society members, along with other figures and masks, but in this case it could also be an old colonial figure not made for using during the Bwami but to offer as a souvenir to a Colonial.
- Biebuyck, Daniel, Lega Culture, Art, Initiation, and Moral Philosophy among a Central African People. 1973
The Wood is clearly oxidized under the green pigment, slight shiny layered patina.
I would date this Lega Janus figure around 1930-40's
David Norden is a third generation antique dealers, dealing in African Art in Antwerp-Belgium since 1992.
All lots from David Norden's collection are sold with a written description of the tribe and David Norden private opinion .
May be viewed or picked up in David Norden's Buy African Antiques Shop in Antwerp.
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Please note: seller guarantees the authenticity as described.