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

Kuba Ngeende "elephant" mask (N° 21468)

The Ngeendé, forming one of the Kuba tribes living in the eastern part of the territory, produced a variant of the spectacular African Kuba moshambwooy mask created by the Bushoong ruling ethnic group. There are many regional stylistic interpretations of this Kuba tribal mask named Mukenga or Mukenge, symbolizing the Woot ruler at the origin of the clan, but the characteristic feature of the mask invariably remains the trunk-like headdress. Made on a basketry frame, the helmet-like mask is entirely covered with hundreds of beads and cowries arranged in geometric patterns. A raffia collar covers the contours. This mask embodies the power of the king through its animal symbolism, the elephant being once a source of wealth and abundance thanks to the ivory of its tusks. Parts slightly disjointed, beads missing.  

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OriginEx-collection belge
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)osier, perles, raphia, cauris
Height cm63
Width32 cm
Weight2.10 Kg
Socle inclusOptional

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