African art > Mask > Luba Mask
Large Luba Kifwebe mask (N° 17637)
Semi-spherical mask, streaked with polychrome ribs, it has similarities with songye masks. However, it did not have the same function. This category of rather rare African masks are named 'bifwebe'. They appeared at funerals and investitures. They performed during the ritual ceremonies of the society kazanzi , charged with fighting witchcraft. " Bifwebe (Sing.: kifwebe) would mean, according to C. Faïk-Nzuji, 'chasing death'. Worn with a voluminous raffia collar that concealed the dancer, this mask was usually danced in the company of a zoomorphic mask. Patine mate.
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Luba (Baluba in Tchiluba) are a people of Central Africa. Their cradle is the Katanga, specifically the region of the Lubu River, so the name (Baluba, which means the Lubas). They were born from a secession of the Songhoy ethnic group, under the leadership of Ilunga Kalala who killed the old king Kongolo, who has since been revered as a python. In the 16th century they created a state, organized in a decentralized chiefdom, which stretched from the Kasai River to Lake Tanganyika. The chiefdoms cover a small territory without a real border that includes no more than three villages.
Ref.: Luba Roberts Luba F. Neyt, ed. Dapper Museum.)
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
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