Unlike 915, where the ‘medicine’ is missing, this figure has a good-sized lump on its abdomen and another on its head. There may well be a cavity in the head intended to accommodate part of the ‘medicine’. The neuter figure is meticulously carved, especially the left hand, and the cross-legged position is clearly carved from the underside as well as on top. Nkisi figures were made and used to give protection against misfortune, whether from natural or supernatural .
Margaret Carey, 1997
Entry taken from Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection, Vol. 2: Pacific, African and Native North American Art, edited by Steven Hooper (Yale University Press, 1997) p. 139.
Acquired by Robert and Lisa Sainsbury in 1972.
Donated to the Sainsbury Centre, University of East Anglia in 1973 as part of the original gift.
Not on display
Title/Description: Seated figure
Born: 1850 - 1950
Object Type: Figure
Measurements: h. 133 x w. 50 x d. 50 mm
Accession Number: 262
Historic Period: 19th Century - Late, 20th Century - Early
Production Place: Africa, Democratic Republic of Congo
Cultural Group: Kongo
Credit Line: Donated by Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, 1973