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Figure - Seeds, Wood - Decorative Nkishi-NO PRICE RESERVE - Bakongo - Congo DRC

Figure - Seeds, Wood - Decorative Nkishi-NO PRICE RESERVE - Bakongo - Congo DRC

A nice decorative Nkishi From Congo. SOLD WITHOUT PRICE RESERVE.

The Nkisi statue from Congo covered with wooden pegs, raffia, seeds, and small cotton filled with spices. A fetish said to hold great power in its body to protect a village.

Nkisi or Nkishi (plural varies: minkisi, zinkisi, or nkisi) are spirits, or an object that a spirit inhabits. It is frequently applied to a variety of objects used throughout the Congo Basin in Central Africa especially in the Territory of Cabinda that are believed to contain spiritual powers or spirits.

Provenance: I got it from an inheritance, the previous owner said here sister acquired it in the 1980's

H=60 cm
Age= second half XXth century
Illustration= Boma 1902 nail fetishes. MRAC.

A nail would be hammered into the statue for each wish, both for personal use and for ceremonial use by the soothsayer-healer Nganga.
These statues were used to stay in good health and solve problems and protect the village.

The Kongo people and their neighbors call this type of figure nkisi nkondi, which translates as “medicine / night hunter.” After a sculptor carved the figure, a ritual specialist empowered it by hiding substances – “medicine” – in its head and collar and on its abdomen. Figures like this one were used to connect living individuals and communities with the spirit world for purposes of divination (gaining knowledge of current or future events), healing, and protection. An nkisi nkondi enforced legal settlements and discouraged wrongdoers.

Made of wood, wood peg nails, brown textiles filled with herbs, raffia, seeds etc.

Despite it"s aspect this Nkishi was made for decoration.


Object Figure
Indigenous object name Decorative Nkishi-NO PRICE RESERVE
Ethnic group/ culture Bakongo
Region/ country Congo DRC
Material Seeds, Wood
Period 2nd half 20th century
Condition Excellent
Sold with stand No
Dimensions 60×20×17 cm
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