African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Kwélé Mask
Kwele Ekuk Large Face Mask (N° 13874)
Ex-french African art collection.
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Bichromy for this African Kwele mask, which comes in the form of a panel consisting of a central face wrapped in horns. These gabonese masks with a concave face, in the heart, have almond eyes and a triangular nose. Generally concealed, the mouth is here in the form of a thin incision giving a smiling appearance. Depending on the presence of horns and their arrangement, the masks are called pipibudzé, Ekuku zokou, etc. and are associated with the ancestors or spirits of the forest, " ekuk ".Tribu of the Kota group, the Kwélé , Bakwélé , live in forest on the northern border of the Republic of Congo. They live on hunting, agriculture and metallurgy. Practicing the cult called Bwété borrowed from the Ngwyes, which was accompanied by obligatory initiation rites, they used at the end of the ceremonies the masks ekuk evoking the antelope whose horns meet in a loop under the chin. The antelope blood was also used in Kwélé for therapeutic purposes. They produce rare statues related to the initiation rites of young people.
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