This very old Dogon sanctuary door is carved with five rows of
nommo figures. Those rows symbolize a strong magic and
spiritual force, usually reserved for the binu sanctuary (see
picture). This force is then, according to beliefs' animists of
Dogon, imparted to the door. In the Dogon myth of the creation of the
Earth, the amma god bore a being figure known as nommo
(the nommo anagonno, symbolized by a fish). This nommo
gave birth to four couples of nommo, considered as the eight
ancestors of the mankind and the four elements.
The construction of this sanctuary door, the austere and traditional
style, as well as a dense and very eroded wood, make this exceptional
piece, impressed of nobleness, one of the greatest Dogon sculptures.
18th / 19th century.
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