Category Archives: Sub-Saharan Africa

Power Figure (Nkisi Nkondi), Vili, Republic of the Congo or Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago, 1998.502

Nkisi Nkondi Power Figure – Meaningful Materials (78)

Power Figure (Nkisi Nkondi), Vili, Republic of the Congo or Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago, 1998.502
Power Figure (Nkisi Nkondi), Vili, Republic of the Congo or Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago, 1998.502

How do artists’ choices of materials assign identity and meaning to works of art? How does meaning assign material? In this excerpt from one of my museum tours, I explore the meaningful materials in a Nkisi Nkondi Power Figure of the Vili people in central Africa. This recording comes complete with all the juicy, unscripted, live-action museum gallery accents including background chatter and beeping proximity alarms.

Mask (Mukenga), Kuba, Western Kasai region, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago, 1982.1504

African Congo Kuba Mukenga Mask – Meaningful Materials (77)

Mask (Mukenga), Kuba, Western Kasai region, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago, 1982.1504
Mask (Mukenga), Kuba, Western Kasai region, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Art Institute of Chicago

How do artists’ choices of materials assign identity and meaning to works of art? How does meaning assign material? In this excerpt from one of my museum tours, I explore the meaningful materials in an African Congolese ceremonial mask of the Kuba Kingdom. This recording comes complete with all the juicy, unscripted, live-action museum gallery accents including background chatter and beeping proximity alarms.