african masksTeke
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A fine Eastern Pende Panya-Gombe African mask. Coll.: David Norden

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Teke sculptors produced many pieces since they where used in the daily life.
The Teke are living in a circle from +/- 300 km in DRC and for a small part in Zaire, around Stanley Pool -Pool Malébo.


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They are associated at two types of spirits:
-The "Bapfu”: the died anonymous ancestors
-The "Nkir”: The well-known ancestors.

There are also "Buti" objects, like boxes, raffia's or shells filled with magical substances.

Teke - Zurich Museum

Exposed in 2001 from the Museum of Zurich:

A catalogue was also published: 

Both statues and objects where used for positive or negative influences, to protect individuals or family's.

The statues have always one or more holes to deposit the magical substances: animal, vegetal, and mineral.

The big packet around the Teke figures contains the spirit from the ancestors and gives it's power to the statue.

The lines on the face correspond to the ritual scarification's Teke people were having in the past.

I have seen Teke’s from 5 cm up to 1 m high.

Also Rahoul Lehuard did a very good book on the Teke figures. They also have nice weapons, like some axes with a head and fine geometric round masks. 

See also the Teke axe