carved-wood

Etruscan Art, the Inspirers to Alberto Giacometti’s Statuary.

Volterra was noted for its production of distinctive bronze figurines which are extremely tall and slim human figures with tiny heads. They are perhaps a relic of much earlier figures cut from sheet bronze or carved from wood and are curiously reminiscent of modern art sculpture. The most famous example dates to the 3rd century BCE and is known as the Ombra della Sera (‘Evening Shadow’). It is a 57 cm tall representation of a naked boy who is rigidly standing to attention and wearing the hint of a smile. The figure is on display in the Museo Etrusco Guarnacci in Volterra.

Thankful to Mark Cartwright’s article for ancient.eu - the Ancient History Encyclopedia

Worldly Traditions: Part I

Nkisi Nkondi (Power Figure). Kongo Peoples (Democratic Republic of the Congo). Late 19th Century. Wood and Metal.

Nkisi Nkondi

I’ve wanted to see a Nkisi Nkondi since I first learned about them. So, when I visited the Met in NYC I was ecstatic to see this beautiful one there (side note: I’m not going to dive into my feelings about taking historical objects from their original locations. Anyone can message me about that later).

Nkisi Nkondi are one of many traditions that is overlooked by most of western society. These traditions like others from Africa, Oceania, Asia, or Americas are often appropriated or seen as trivial. This is incredibly sad to me, especially seeing that those who love magick should educate them on all the traditions and spirituality of the cultures around them (all of which are amazingly interesting).

These power figures are no exception. Nkisi Nkondi work directly with societal affairs. The objects are carved from wood then stuffed with medicinal herbs. These sacred objects are designed to cure physical or non-physical issues, often in the form of social contracts. The figure itself is home to powerful forces with the ability over see contracts.

One of the most distinctive quality of these figures are the materials stabbed into the figure. They very in size and shape signifying the deals and affairs of the people interacting the figure. The idea being that a nail is driven in to start a contract, and if broken the figures forces will be unleashed to punish the wrongdoer. 

The Nkisi Nkondi is an excellent example of spirituality and magick playing a large role in human societies. Of course with the introduction of colonialism these traditions were either fetishized or destroyed. Some traditions were brought to the America’s as well.

Overall Nkisi Nkondi are amazing objects that shouldn’t be forgotten.

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Taejin Seong aka Tae Jin Seong aka 성태진 (Korean, b. 1974, Choong Ju, Chung Cheong Buk Do, Seoul, Korea) - 1: Hardly Was There Any Cockcrow, 2015  2: Mars Attacks, 2016  3: My Heart Hurt, 2016  Acrylics, Ink on Embossed Wood Panel (Photos do not come close to the beauty in his work)  


A mysterious wooden idol found in a Russian peat bog has been dated to 11,000 years old - and contains a code no one can decipher.

The Shigir Idol

is twice as old as the Pyramids and Stonehenge - and is by far the oldest wooden structure in the world. Even more mysteriously, it is covered in what experts describe as ‘encrypted code’ - a message from a lost civilisation. Professor Mikhail Zhilin of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Archeology said: ‘The ornament is covered with nothing but encrypted information. People were passing on knowledge with the help of the Idol.’

The statue had been dated as being 9,500 years old, after its discovery in a peat bog 125 years ago. But new research in Mannheim, Germany used Accelerated Mass Spectrometry on small fragments of the sculpture, and found it is at least 11,000 years old. That means the sculpture dates from the very beginning of the Holocene epoch - the era when man rose to dominate the world.