African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Kuba mask

Kuba/ Ngeende Bwoom helmet mask (N° 20772)

The African primitive arts among "the people of lightning."
The voluminous royal mask Bwoom, also named Bongo among the Ngeende, represents the pygmy, the common man nicknamed Twa. Supposedly blind, a beaded ribbon masks his eyes. Animal skin and raffia cloth are stretched over the hollowed-out top of the head. According to Joseph Cornet, this mask was introduced during the reign of a Kuba king, the Nyim, who became insane after having the offspring of his predecessor murdered. Abraded matte patina. The Kuba kingdom was founded in the 16th century by the Bushoong who are still ruled by a king today. More than twenty types of tribal masks are used among the Kuba or "people of lightning," with meanings and functions that vary from group to group. Ritual ceremonies were an opportunity to display decorative arts and masks to honor the spirit of the deceased or to honor the king. Three types of masks related to Kuba mythological history have been associated with dances that take place in the royal compound, on the occasion of funerals, enthronements, or for circumcisions: the first, known as Moshambwooy , represents Woot , the founder of the Bushoong sub-tribe, the culture hero. The second, known as Nady Amwaash (Ngaady Un Mwash), embodies Woot's wife/sister, a character that would have been introduced to give more importance to the role of women. The third mask is Bwoom .  

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OriginEx-collection française
EthnyKuba
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, metal, raphia, cauris, graines
Height40
Depth30
Width26
Weight2.90 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°
Socle inclusOptional

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African art - Kuba/ Ngeende Bwoom helmet mask
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