Guests will discover figures from personal or family shrines, such because the Byeri guardian determine, complemented by those utilized in neighborhood shrines and areas, akin to Mami Wata and the Ethiopian Processional Cross. Ancestor figures and fetishes carved by the Kongo and associated peoples, who live along the coast and in the Mayombé forest, are more realistically expressive than the figures of other areas. Large life-size carved figures stand on the entrances of Yaka initiation huts, the within walls of that are coated with painted bark panels.
The mixture of music, dance, costume, and bodily ornamentation—in addition to sculpture and masks—is ceaselessly what imparts each significance and dynamism to individual art objects. In making ready their rice farms, the Mende usually uncovered figures carved in soapstone and often called nomoli , which they set up in shelters to protect the crop.
Brooklyn Museum, New York, Museum Expedition 1922, Robert B. Woodward Memorial Fund, 22.1138. Dogon sculptures function a bodily medium in initiations and as an explanation of the world. In nice half they honor the spirits by means of the use of masks and carved figures.
Ancestor figures of the Bambara clearly derive from the identical artistic custom as do many of these of the Dogon; so additionally do their sculptures in wrought iron Such figures are made by blacksmiths, who—because of their ability in transforming materials from the earth—are believed to manage nice amounts of power (nyama).
One of many works on view in the reinstalled gallery is a miniature bocio figure. Figures are made to deal with the spirits of deceased members of the family and are positioned in household shrines, and masks are used to drive away the spirits of the deceased at the end of the mourning interval.