Lot: 227

Guardian figure of reliquary ensemble "byeri"

Southern Cameroon, Fang, Mabea

Provenance Size Starting price / estimated price
Everett Burton Helm, Minneapolis/Berlin, USA/ Germany

H: 16.3 inch 8000 EUR / 12000 EUR

wood, rep., base The Mabea are a Fang subgroup that settled along the coast of southern Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon. Present figure served as guardian figure and was fixed on receptacles containing the reliquaries of venerated ancestors. They should remind of the faded person and should prevent people who were not allowed, to have a look into such boxes. They presented a kind of protecting house spirit as well, they should keep away evil and bad spirits. At the moment of ritual, for example propitation or initiation, the skulls, bones and wooden statues were smeared with several different unguents with precise and secret symbolical functions.