MboleREGION OF ORIGIN:
Democratic Republic of CongoMATERIAL:
13.5" (34.3 cm) TallCONDITION:
Private USA Estate Collection
These Mbole figures, with their hands on their thighs, slightly bent legs enlarged head and heart shaped face are thought to represent hanged men, Ofika, who have been judged and found guilty by the Lilwa society, or sacrificed in order to allow a dignitary to obtain Isoya grade of the Lilwa society. The sculptor would belong to the same family as the dead man and the figure is supposed to carry the dead mans soul.
The figures are kept in huts in the forest and are used during initiation ceremonies, were they can be used to inhibit criminal behavior in the new initiates.