Dogon Iron Ginna Figure

Dogon iron Ginna figure that would be kept at the altar of the Binu priest.

Tribe: Dogon

Origin: Mali

Approx Age: Early 20th Century

Materials: Iron

Dimensions cm: 11 (tall)

Ref. Number: 1322



This Dogon iron Ginna figure, small in size but has a strong presence. Standing in an upright position with both arms outstretched. Very angular head shape with minimal if any signs of facial features,  nice encrusted patina due to being libated over the years. 

Provenance: Ex Lampevelden Collection Netherlands.


Small Dogon iron figures were normally placed upright near or next to the alter of the Ginna, the Ginna is the large family house of the village (Gina Na or Gina Da). These forged iron figures exhibit the technical skill and artistry that Dogon blacksmiths brought to their work. They would do the smelting to get the iron from iron ore, then heat and hammer out both the tools and weapons used and the important ritual objects.

Dogon art is primarily sculpture. Dogon art revolves around religious values, ideals, and freedoms. Dogon sculptures are not made to be seen publicly, and are commonly hidden from the public eye within the houses of families, sanctuaries, or kept with the Hogon . The importance of secrecy is due to the symbolic meaning behind the pieces and the process by which they are made.

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