Standing power figure (nkisi)

Yombe peoples
19th–20th century
more object details

General Description

Once a powerful nkisi (pl. minkisi), this figure has retained only one pack of medicine, which is contained in the necklace. Judging by the discoloration on the torso, this nkisi once held another medicine pack in front. The damaged head probably held medicines covered with resin under a feather headdress like those worn by the religious specialists, or banganga (sing. nganga) who activate minkisi.

Excerpt from

Roslyn A. Walker, Label text, Arts of Africa, 2015.