Baga Nimba Headdress, Guinea, African Tribal Creations Gallery, Art, Bagga Dumba
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Baga Nimba Headdress, Guinea, African Tribal Creations Gallery, Art, Bagga Dumba:
AnAfrican Tribal Creations gallery
Baga Nimba Headdress / Figure
Resident to Guinea and Guinea-Bissau, the Baga people are a curious and relatively small ethnic group that reside in a region which floods severely for half of the year. The only method of distance transportion is a dugout canoe, and fishing, as well as marshland agriculture (rice, kola nuts, etc.) make up their primary livelihood. A monotheistic people, their only ritual is societal initiation, which occurs only once every twenty four years. Art among the Baga people, as well as tradition, has been significantly depleted and repressed due to the advent of Islam in the region. Their most well-known sculpture, is the Nimba (or Dumba) figure, a large, quasi-humanoid figure that displays a large pair of breasts and a long, narrow, almost equine head with a large nose and human-like facial features. The figure stand on four legs and would be hoisted onto the dancer's shoulders, where he would be covered beneath the legs under a skirt of raffia fiber. The figures are produced in a number of sizes, the largest of which are used in fertility ceremonies, especially those timed around agricultural harvest periods. Nimba, in the Baga mythology, is a sort of 'Earth mother', called upon for needs of fertility and is representative of the most dignified points of Baga culture.
This beautiful Nimba figure is a large domestic size, meaning a home or shrine sized figure, but not a full sized Nimba (which could often be four to five feet in height, weighing several hundred pounds). It is in beautiful condition, displaying normal age related wear, and is finely detailed, with the numerous linear identifying scarification marks characteristic of these figures. From the ears, hangs strands of dyed red fiber. The Nimba bears a dark chocolate brown patina, encrusted in several places, which displays the common evidence of age, transport, and exposure, including minor rub marks, scratches, etc. The small spike on the back of the neck has at some point in the past been broken off. This appears to be a very old and minor break, as can be observed in the photographs. These points will generally hold small tufts of animal hair. It is not uncommon to see such breaks. It stands stable on its four legs, and makes for a very impressive display piece, certain to compliment any fine collection!
Dimensions of this piece are 21.5" x 14" x 9.5", and it weighs in at seven and a half pounds.
Medium: Wood, Fiber
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This is a beautiful piece of art! It would be a great compliment to any decor, or private collection!
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