Divination Instrument (Galukoji) (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

Educational
ca. 1925-50
Pende
Sculpture
Tools, Equipment, Utensils
wood, fiber, feathers
Democratic Republic of Congo
2012.283
The galukoji is a type of instrument diviners used while hearing testimony in criminal cases or investigating problems befalling an individual, family, or community. By manipulating the accordion-like framework, the diviner could raise the mask to face the onlooker. The pronounced forehead of the miniature spirit mask implies possession of powerful knowledge. Galukojis were used from the 1920s to the 1950s, a time of severe colonial oppression (see adjacent figure), which the Pende viewed as an attack by evil spirits. In response, they developed new divination tools, including the galukoji.
Aldine S. Hartman Endowment Fund
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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