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    Description

    Hemba, Niembo(?) (Democratic Republic of Congo)
    Male Ancestor
    Wood
    Height: 17 5/8 inches Width: 7 inches Depth: 6 ½ inches

    Among the many exceptional sculptural styles which more recent scholarship has separated from the formerly-used broad category of Luba, one of the most striking and presence-filled is that of the Hemba. Hemba social structure and identity focused strongly on important ancestors, resulting in a now noted series of serene, eternalized male figures, of which this is a splendid example. "An ancestor figure was venerated by a specific clan and was maintained by its members in a funerary house or in the chief's house. The figure expresses the dependence of the world of the living on that of the dead - and is thus a funerary and religious symbol - and indicates the ownership of land and the possession of social authority ... " (François Neyt in Susan Vogel, ed. For Spirits and Kings. African Art from the Paul and Ruth Tishman Collection. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1981, p.217). The entire lower body and undersides of the hands are missing due to insect loss. Minor surface abrasions, small missing chips at the top rear of the headdress, and a few vertical cracks do not mar the impact of this figure.

    Provenance:
    Belgian Collection
    Robert & Marianne Huber, Dixon, Illinois
    John Paynter, Dallas, 1977
    John Buxton, Dallas



    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2007
    7th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,894

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

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