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    Description

    Teke (Democratic Republic of Congo)
    Nkira ntswo Ancestor Figure
    Wood
    Height: 13 inches Width: 2 ½ inches Depth: 2 7/8 inches

    The specific caplike headdress indicates a person of Chiefly rank, which supports identification of this as an nkira (pl. bankiri), a kind of nature spirit with "positive ritual functions that emerge from the will of the ancestors to assure the well-being of their descendants ..." (Alphonse Lema Gwete in Gustaaf Verswijver, Els De Palmenaer, Viviane Baeke, and Anne-Marie Bouttiaux-Ndiaye, eds. Masterpieces from Central Africa. Munich, New York: Prestel, 1996, p.151). When in use, magical materials were packed in the abdominal cavity and the whole middle area covered with pastes which hardened into a casing. There are old losses around the abdominal opening and along the outer edge of the proper right foot.

    Provenance: A West Coast collector
    Renauld Vanuxem, Paris



    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: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 557

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

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