Téké Buti Power Figure, Democratic Republic of Congo #34

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  • Téké Buti Power Figure, Democratic Republic of Congo #34
  • Statue Biteke (sculpted figure) embodying an Ancestor of the Clan. His hollow bust must have housed the magical charge called "Bonga" or "Bilongo", which was generally fixed or concealed by a textile wrapped around the torso. This symbolism refers to the Téké belief that the "abdomen conceals wisdom". These Fetishes were placed on the Altars of the Chiefs.
  • Established between the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of the Congo and Gabon, the Téké were organized into Chiefdoms, the Chief of which was often chosen from among the Blacksmiths.
  • The Head of the Family, Mfumu, had the Right of Life or Death over his Family, the Importance of which determined his Prestige. The Chief of the Clan, Ngantsié , kept the Great Protective Fetish, Tar Mantsié, which supervised all the Ceremonies. It is the powerful Healer and Diviner who "loaded" with Magical Elements, against payment, the individual Statuettes. It was also according to his Directives that Worship was given to Ancestors.
  • The Statues without Magical Charge were called Nkiba, the Janiform Statues embodying Pwaw Chiefs. The Statuettes, named Mutinu Bmmba , Matomba or Butti, were endowed with an apotropaic function or ensured, depending on the case, the smooth running of the Childbirth.
  • Bilongo were sometimes taken from the Statues, leaving them bloodless, and incorporated into new sculptures to be sold to other families.
  • Their secret society, Kidumu, used circular flat masks adorned with polychrome geometric patterns. Ref. : "Congo River" F. Neyt; "The Tribal Art of Black Africa" ​​ed. Assouline
  • Measurements: 8.27 inches height