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Reliquary figure (mbulu ngulu)

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Kota reliquary figures were among the first African works to gain admiration in the West. Their anthropomorphic shape, with oversized head and lozenge-shaped upper torso, especially appealed to artists at the beginning of the twentieth century. In their original settings, these figures guarded...

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Inscription

2 white labels verso: "70"(handwritten);"92"(printed)

Provenance

1944, sold by Madeleine Rousseau (b. 1895 - d. 1980), Paris, to Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Paris and Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart

African, Kota, Obamba peoples, Gabon, Late 19th to early 20th century

Object Place

Gabon

Dimensions

Overall: 47 x 16 x 8 cm (18 1/2 x 6 5/16 x 3 1/8 in.)

Accession Number

2009.2696

Medium or Technique

Wood, metal

Collections

Africa and Oceania

Classifications

Sculpture