Baule Doh Figure

Pre-colonial female Baule figure, villagers name this figure as “doh” meaning fetish female.

Tribe: Baule

Origin: Ivory Coast

Approx Age: Early-Mid 20th century

Materials: Wood

Dimensions cm: 29 (tall including stand)

Ref. Number: 1075

£600.00

Description:

An old example of a pre-colonial Baule Doh Figure. The Baule name this figure as “doh” meaning fetish female. It is for women’s rituals to accompany the queen to make offerings to the ancestors, it was covered with red kaolin which is a symbol of victory to show the success of sacrifice made. Although the covering of red kaolin looks to be random, its is placed.  Nicely carved with simple coiffure, facial features, and delicate body. Sadly there has been loss to the toes on both feet due to the age of this enchanting figure. This piece would have been owned by a Baule Komian ( Spiritual Healer).

History

This Baule Doh Figure would have been owned by a diviner who is known as a Komian. Baule diviners are consulted by people who desire assistance in solving significant problems, perhaps relating to childbearing or other health concerns. Sculptures are often an important presence in divining sessions. Diviners may inherit such works from older colleagues or commission them based on the direction of a spirit whose insights they draw upon in their professional consultations.

The Baule diviners can be male or female. Amongst the Baule, a diviner is more likely to be male. The diviners have paraphernalia, and this is hats, mallets, display weaponry and iron gongs, and the diviner also possesses a fine-art sculpture(s) of the human figure. Divination is an attempt to form, and possess, an understanding of reality in the present and additionally, to predict events and reality of a future time.

Baule Komian/Diviner

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