Doe funerary marionette


Traditional East African Art

Little research has been done at the ethnic level in the coastal regions of Tanzania. It is therefore not always easy to attribute a piece with precision to one ethnic group or another, as well as to know its exact ritual role.

Tanzanian African art contains many "Mwana Hiti" dolls, gourds as well as some masks and rare large statues. The best known ethnic groups are the Zaramo, the Kwere and the Luguru.

The puppet offered here is of Doé or Zaramo origin. These ethnic groups are known for the use of figurines with articulated limbs during funeral rites. During these, a nephew of the deceased speaks through the statue and praises the actions of the deceased.

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Data sheet

Presumed dating
Mid XXth century
33 cm
Ethnic group
Doe or Zaramo
Wood, rope
Tribal art collection Belgium

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