230411 - Antique Terracotta Adamawa Kwandalha healing sculpture - Nigeria
An Adamawa Kwandalha healing sculpture, also called Longuda, according to the language, Estern Nigeria, close to the Benue river.
"After a ritual specialist determined the cause of a disease, the patient was given a newly modeled vessel, into which the disease was transferred. Such pots, which tend to embody the symptoms described, are remarkable for their highly expressive and imaginative forms." Source Brooklyn Museum, Vessel for Kwandalha Divination.
"The art of manufacturing and the knowledge of its use are reserved for only a few old people today; the young generation, brought up by missionaries, often no longer even know of their existence", Karl-Ferdinand Schaedler, Erde und Erz, S. 271.
Lit.: Karl-Ferdinand Schaedler, Erde und Erz. 2500 Jahre Afrikanische Kunst aus Terrakotta und Metall, 1979.
This Adamawa Kwandalha healing sculpture head was collected in my private collection in 1997.
It shows wear consistent with an age of several hundred years, including cracks and chips that are a normal part of the patina. Importantly, it is an intact original piece.