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Chamba Standing Miniature Nigeria African Art

$225.00
Product #: 112770
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Title Chamba Standing Miniature Nigeria African Art
Type of Object Figure, carving
Country of Origin Nigeria
People Chamba
Materials Wood, pigment
Approximate Age Mid 20th Century
Dimensions Height: 10 Inches
Width: 4 Inches
Depth: 4 Inches
Overall Condition Fair.  Most of our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners.   Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use.  We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings. Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.
Damage/Repair Deteriorated and encrusted wood. stains, chips, dirt, and wear


Additional Information:    The surface is encrusted and shows significant signs of age and use.  It probably comes from the Chamba people or neighbors. 


Chamba  are a small group today living south of the Benue River in Northern Nigeria in an area of mixed art and influences. Their sculptures show stylistic affinities to the Wurkum and Mumuye to the north resulting in an exchange of sculptures and styles through time between these groups. 


Little is known regarding Chamba sculptures, but it has been reported that figures such as this are used in cult activity, known as Jup, ones dominated by men, or, in the case of women, Jem. Jem practices are directed to the life issues of disease, death, and misfortune, which they can cause and cure.  Jup activity cuts across all aspects of Chamba life and family relationships; it is music, dance, performance, as it defines ethical and moral codes and is the means to adjust and control the seen and unseen. Jup names animals, rituals, things of the bush, the dead and the living. In fact Jup is an integral part of Chamba life and in order to name the function a figure it is necessary to know the context. Sculpted figures as well as any number of other objects were known as Jup and were publicly or secretively displayed during ceremonies or rituals. 


 Recommended Reading:


Sieber, Roy. Sculpture of Northern Nigeria, 1961.


Sieber, R. and Tony Vevers. Interaction: the art styles of the Benue River and East Nigeria. 1974.


Wittmer, M.K. and W. Arnett, Three Rivers of Nigeria, Art of the Lower Niger, Cross and Benue, 1978.