603 - Statuette of a male figure

Nigeria, Burkina Faso

This is a small and very thin effigy, quite stylized almost like a sculpture by Giacometti. It is probably a male character, judging by the scarified face, the representation of its pectoral area and its prominent navel. The body is very stretched, not at all natural, the elongated arms stretch down to the knees, and have a handle-like appearance. The entire body is marked with patterns similar to those on the funeral urn; it is decorated with very graphic geometrical markings.

Taking into account the quite caricatural and schematic features of the character (large nose, large ears) and of an ultimately coarse pottery style, it is not impossible that we are dealing with the representation of a deceased family member with whom the effigy would accompany in the tomb, his eyes turned towards the sky.

H. 38 cm
3-11th century

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