Despite its appearance, this Mambila figure exhibits neither age nor use and was probably made to be sold.
Photographs © Hamill Gallery
Figures like these were known as tadep and were used by the Suaga association, which was concerned with justice and protection from supernatural forces. Mambila masks, vabo, and figures share exaggerated features and curving planes. The sculpted figures are usually squat and disproportional. The heads often have heart-shaped faces and are decorated with small wooden pegs. The legs are slightly bent and the arms are brought forward and upward.
Also note the indigenous repair to the eye and side of the face.
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