Lot: 43

Seated female figure of the "tyekpa" association

Côte d'Ivoire, Senufo

Provenance Size Hammer price
Lorenz Eckert (ca.1920-1960), Basel, Switzerland
Robert Lewitzki, Celle, Germany
H: 20.7 inch 2700 EUR

wood, paint residues, pigments,

These figures appeared during the complex funerary celebrations of the "tyekpa" association, that also included music, song and dance. The figures were carried by the women in front of their bodies or raised high above their heads. The "tyekpa" association is part of the female "sando(go)" society, whose male counterpart is the "poro" society.

The performances of the women are intended to evoke the myth of
creation, the mother figure of the "katyéléô" and the importance of
women for the continued existence of the community.

The figure shows a young woman in her prime as a symbol for female fertility, as well as for the fertility of the soil. Both are important prerequisites for an agrarian society like that of the Senufo.


Burkhard Gottschalk, Senufo - Unbekannte Schätze aus privaten Sammlungen, Düsseldorf 2009, p. 100 ff.
Expo cat.: "Afrikanische Kunst, Sammlung Robert Lewitzki", Bomann-Museum (Hg.), Celle 2012, p. 37
Exhibited:

Celler Schloss, Gotische Halle: "Afrikanische Kunst, Sammlung Robert Lewitzki", 10. Juli - 31 August 2012