On customised stand
Importance of such sculpture to the Songye people lies in their effectiveness as protectors of the community from malevolent forces and disease. The power of such figures depends on their ingredients (bishimba), concealed in the abdominal cavity, in the top or side of the head, shoulders, or in a horn set into the cranium. These hidden substances acquire potency and interact with the spirit world when assembled by the nganga, or ritual practitioner.
Jean-Marc Desaive, Soumagne, Belgium
- Neyt, F., 2009, Songye, The Formidable Statuary of Central Africa
- Hersak, D., 1986, Songye: Masks and Figure Sculpture
- Felix, M., 2003, Beauty and the Beasts. Kifwebe and Animal masks of the Songye, Luba and Related People from the Collection of Stewart J. Warkow