Luba Mboko Vessel

c. 1900
$2,980 USD
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H: 12.0" Dia: 8.25"
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Receiving guidance from tribal ancestors was a central aspect of the Luba people's spiritual practices. This gourd-form ceramic divination vessel, known as a mboko, it would have been filled with items like antelope horns, shells, dried beetles, human teeth, fruits, seeds, chalk and miniature carved figures. A traditional ritual involved shaking the filled mboko and then releasing the items from within. Luba sages would read which objects presented themselves together. These arrangements were interpreted as revelatory signs from which the diviner could diagnose a problem. The process would be repeated again and again, each time providing further insight and understanding.

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