Igbo / Izzi, Statuette

Igbo / Izzi, Statuette

first half of the 20th
Height : 45 cm
Tribal Art
Inventory number
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Very rare IGBO/IZZI statuette from Nigeria.

Within the IZZI (a group that differs from other IGBO groups), families had shrines where various containers were used for offerings or propitiatory acts.
To mark the sacred existence of the places and to embellish them, figurines in the form of animals or characters were erected on the altars.
It was up to the women to model them, to bake them and sometimes to burnish them by rubbing them with a stone. These pieces were sometimes decorated with white pigments.

This statue with beautiful proportions in the pure Igbo style, heraldic position with a large neck ending with a large necklace decorated with a medallion, the haughty head topped with three shells is in perfect condition, Eugene Bettra base.

Face with half-closed eyes, open mouth, pointed nose slightly turned up, scarification on the cheeks, ear with round curls.
Remains of yellow, white and orange pigments on the face, neck and belt, as well as tiny remains of small feathers on one of the cheeks, proving that this statuette was consecrated.
Beautiful sitting position with entangled hands resting on the knees. Bracelet on the forearms as well as on the legs (from knees to ankles).

Provenance :

  • Eugene Bettra Collection
  • Collection Alain Dufour, Galerie Afrique.


Bibliography :

  • In forme et couleurs edition Musée Dapper (exhibition from April 1 to September 15, 1993) page 71 for a very similar statuette and page 192/193 N° 71.
  • In Igbo ARTS community and cosmos Museum of cultural history, University of California, Los Angeles Exhibition 1984/1986 page 81 for a close statuette.