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Toma Loma Standing Figure Medicine African Art

Product #: 125624
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Title Toma Loma Standing Figure Medicine African Art
Type of Object Carving, figure
Country of Origin Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia
People Toma or Loma
Materials Wood
Approximate Age 20th century
Dimensions Height: 41 Inches
Width: 11 Inches
Depth: 11 Inches
Overall Condition Fair
Damage/Repair Cracks, chips and a well worn patina, chipped foot

Additional Information: A Figure used in ceremony where medicinal items would be placed in the container a top the head.

Little is known about the use and the function of their figures. Jacqueline Delange (1967) cited in Jacques Kerchache et al.(1988:521) mentioned the existence, among the Toma people, of Bundu figures kept in sacred huts and used in the context of the women Bundu association, which is similar to the Sande society among the Mende people. This carving could have been used as  a power figure, and may have served several purposes: to chase away evil forces, protect the holder and his family, or to harm enemies and thieves.

The Toma are a small group (200,000 people) found in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia. Most of their ceremonies revolve around the secret Poro society. A rounded forehead cut away sharply just above the eyes is a trademark of their masks.  

Recommended Reading:

Kerchache et al's "ART OF AFRICA

See also the CD "ART AND LIFE IN AFRICA" for more information.