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Figure (Iginga)

Arts of Africa

Iginga is a generic Lega term for human figurines owned by the highest-ranking members of Bwami. This example most likely served to mark the right of a specific Lega community to hold higher-level initiation rites. The piece has been cleaned, oiled, and rubbed with white powder many times, giving it a rich patina.
MEDIUM Wood, plastic beads
DATES late 19th or early 20th century
DIMENSIONS 11 x 3 3/4 x 2 1/2 in. (27.9 x 9.5 x 6.4 cm) Base: 4 x 3 1/4 x 1/4 in. (10.2 x 8.3 x 0.6 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
CREDIT LINE Gift of Marcia and John Friede
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Female figure standing with legs apart and hands resting on hips. Around the neck are two necklaces, one of white beads and one of red beads. The face is heart shaped with triangular incisions at forehead. Eyes are almond shaped. There is a verticle incision on each cheek and incised lines on the lower torso. Knees bend outward. Block feet have vertical carvings for toes. Female genitalia indicated. CONDITION: Generally good. There is a check from top of left side of head in back that extends to waist. Gouge on top of head. Figure is attached to a modern metal stand.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Lega. Figure (Iginga), late 19th or early 20th century. Wood, plastic beads, 11 x 3 3/4 x 2 1/2 in. (27.9 x 9.5 x 6.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Marcia and John Friede, 74.66.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 74.66.1_PS2.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 74.66.1_PS2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
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