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Religion and Society in the Kingdom of Loango

Title of Research Project:
Religion and Society in the Kingdom of Loango (17th – 19th century)
The evidences of old African ethnographic material from the collection of the Grassi Museums für Völkerkunde zu Leipzig, Staatliche Ethnographische Sammlungen Sachsen (GRASSI Ethnographical Museum in Leipzig)

Project organiser:
Grassi Museum für Völkerkunde zu Leipzig (GRASSI Ethnographical Museum in Leipzig)

The state Loango, which is situated north of the lower mouth of the river Congo, possessed a complicated hierarchical administration structure, in which the high officials formed a broad elite class. Following the sacral position of the king, the political power of the social institutions and functions were religiously established. Political and religious elements of power found their expressions in a distinctive symbolism as well as in different rituals that referred to the succession, the worship of ancestors and to magic for society's protection. Following socio-ethnic and aesthetic questions, the research projects looks into representational and functional objects, which came into the collection of the Ethnographical Museum in Leipzig by the collector Robert Visser in the beginning of the 20th century.

Attempted Results and Aims:
An old African society mirrored in its art.
The collection of Robert Visser

October 7, 2011 – January 1, 2012

Budget Funds

Project Manager:
Dr. Christine Seige

Coopeartion Partnerspartner:
Leipziger Arbeitsgemeinschaft Naturwissenschaften und Kulturgut (LANK); Universität Leipzig
natural scientific research of magical figures (macroscopy, analyses of material, determination of hidden material and production techniques)

exhibition catalogue

Dr. Christine Seige
Telephone: 0049 - (0)341 - 9731908