The ritual objects of Africa's spiritual world

My google art gallery is made up of spiritual objects used in African culture. These objects were primarily used during rituals, but some objects were just used to ward away bad spirits or for attracting the help of a spiritual being. This gallery will include all aspects of African’s ritual culture and descriptions on what the items were intended to do.  Every culture has their own form of ritual or spiritual objects, but to me, African's culture has the most unique and beautiful objects. African culture has such a wide variety of spiritual and ritual object, whether it is masks, cups, staffs, or just small objects.

My gallery includes a Palm Wine cup, which was an item used in hopes to gain royal blood lines. It also includes a Ngil society mask, which was used for initiations and hunting sorcerers. My galley contains a Divination object which African tribes would use to identify spirits. Another item in my gallery is a Ceremonial Staff which was used for representing the powerful spiritual deities. Also included in my gallery is a head dress and reliquary guardian figure. The headdress was used during funeral celebrations. The reliquary figures were used to carry the remains of important action figures.

The pieces I choose for my gallery clearly show the aesthetic and cultural values of the African people. The works in my gallery all have a high regard of how they are aesthetically presented. Another aspect about the work in my gallery showing the value of African values because they are all made of figurative or animalistic sculpture which was a big aspect in African art. The theme of spiritual objects really fits with the African culture because they were so into the spiritual that they wanted their art to be useful in that aspect as well.

 Refrences: “Kuba: Palm Wine Cups.” 1 Jan. 2004. Web. 12 Apr. 2016. <http: / /www.randafricanart.com /kuba_cup_3.html.>    

  "Fang Mask History" Rebirth African Art Gallery. ] Web. 25 Apr. 2016. <http: / /www.rebirth.co.za /fang /fang_mask_history.htm>.

 "Divination Object (Gbaule)" Brooklyn Museum . Web. 25 Apr. 2016. <https: / /www.brooklynmuseum.org /opencollection /objects /4952 /divination_object_gbaule>. 

"Divination Objects" . Web. 24 Apr. 2016. <http: / /www.hamillgallery.com /site /divinationobjects.html>.

"Ceremonial Staff (Kibango)" Brooklyn Museum . N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Apr. 2016. <https: / /www.brooklynmuseum.org /opencollection /objects /2900 /ceremonial_staff_kibango>.

"Funerary Headdress (Tugunga)" Brooklyn Museum . N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Apr. 2016. <https: / /www.brooklynmuseum.org /opencollection /objects /4825 /funerary_headdress_tugunga>.

"Reliquary Guardian Figure (Boumba Bwiti)" Brooklyn Museum . N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Apr. 2016. <https: / /www.brooklynmuseum.org /opencollection /objects /100716 /reliquary_guardian_figure_boumba_bwiti>.

"Wooden cup used for ritual drinking of palm wine, in the form of a human head, with a handle." The cup is decorated around the hairline, as well as between the eyes. Some african cultures believed that drinking out of the cup would lead to the formation of a royal blood line. Another use for the Palm Cup would be to make a person drink poison out of it, if they were thought guilty. (Kuba: Palm Wine Cups)
Elongated masks like this one, were referred to as Ngil Masks. The masks were used during the initiation of new members as well as the persecution of wrong doings. Were also worn for hunting and punishing sorcerers. The white on the masks has been linked to represent the dead. (Fang Mask History)
Gbaule are divination objects used to determine what the cause of illness was as well as identifying evil spirits. (Divination Object) Divination Objects were used to communicate with gods, spirits and ancestors to understand or influence one's fate. (Divination Objects)
"Many Luba staffs are surmounted by a pair of female figures usually representing powerful spirit mediums. In Luba culture, these figures express a belief in women's powers to connect the worlds of humankind and the spirits." (Ceremonial Staff)
"Masks are worn during the funerals of the association’s members and during other official activities. Placed on top of the head so that they tower above spectators, the masks inspire respect and awe." (Funerary Headdress: Tugunga)
"The Tsogho, like other groups in Gabon, construct bundles, often decorated with carved figures, to contain the remains of important ancestors and other powerful materials. Among the Tsogho, these bundles commemorate specific ancestors. Periodically, offerings are made to the reliquary, or boumba bwiti, to honor the ancestor and other members of the lineage. Families may also use the figures during initiations." (Reliquary Guardian Figure (Boumba Bwiti))
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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