Kotoko Putchu Guinadji

Kotoko figure on horseback. Height: 4,8 cm.Image courtesy of Sotheby's (Sotheby's, New York, "Masterpieces of African Art from the Collection of the Late Werner Muensterberger ", 11 May 2012. Lot 58.).

Kotoko figure on horseback. Height: 4,8 cm.Image courtesy of Sotheby’s (Sotheby’s, New York, “Masterpieces of African Art from the Collection of the Late Werner Muensterberger “, 11 May 2012. Lot 58.).

I just discovered an interesting article on the process of making Putchu Guinadji talisman by the Kotoko people in Cameroon and Chad. Apparently the process of making such talisman had not been recorded up to now.

After putting together a fine collection of “Putchu Guinadji”, miniature horsemen or warriors made of bronze, silver, copper, or brass, for my museum, I became curious about these talismans that were supposedly used by mad people among the Kotoko people in Cameroon and Chad, near the Lake Chad basin, along the Logone and Chan rivers.

There is as good as no literature on the Putchu Guinadji or on their makers, the Kotoko people. Pierluigi Peroni, a collector in Italy, has published two beautiful art books on his outstanding collection but has no description of how these horsemen were activated or used. My curiosity was awakened. No photos exist of these pieces being used, and no texts explain their spiritual activation or how they are used. On December 7,2012 I flew to Cameroon with the goal of unraveling the secret of the Putchu Guinadji.

Continue reading here.