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Standing Male Figure (Sigiti)

Arts of Africa

This figure was created to commemorate an ancestor chief, although it does not represent the deceased in a literal way. Such figures are kept by the current chief to symbolize the historical precedent on which his authority is based and the perpetuation of the clan.
CULTURE Hemba
MEDIUM Carved, stained lightwood, incised, polished, woven reed
DATES late 19th century
DIMENSIONS 17 3/4 x 8 x 8 in. (45.1 x 20.3 x 20.3 cm)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
ACCESSION NUMBER 68.32
CREDIT LINE Gift of the Florence and Carl L. Selden Foundation
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Carved lightwood male figure. Elaborate dark-stained 3-element headdress at back. Two side projections and a flat incised center. Pointed and deeply incised beard along chin. Oval face with eyes and eyebrows a sries of ovals, straight tappering nose, thin pursed lips, neck straight cylindrical. Upper torso with crudely finished hands and fingers at stomach centered by navel. Muscles of chest and arms indicated, flexed knees and prominent penis hidden beneath reed skirt. Flat web-like feet (toes represented) a part of the thick circular base. Under surfaces unpolished, high polish on head and upper torso. CONDITION: Good: Small cracks throughout. One large gapping crack at back from headdress to base, some native repairs. Small chip at tip of nose.
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