African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Lega mask

Lega mask (N° 23577)

Primitive Lega Sculptures in African Art . This mask, which was not intended to be worn, but manipulated during rituals, displays classic lega characteristics. This African mask Lega indicated the stage that its holder had reached within the Bwami, a learning society composed of different ranks, and which wives whose spouse had reached the third level, that of ngandu.
Bwami society, open to men and women, organized social and political life. There were up to seven levels of initiation, each associated with emblems. Following Social recognition and authority also had to be earned individually: the chief owed his selection to his heart (mutima), good character, intelligence, and irreproachable behavior. During ritual ceremonies, the Idumu masks, of collective property, were presented to the initiates placed on a barrier and surrounded by individual masks of smaller format. The passage of a rank indicated the acquisition of a certain individual wisdom and morality.  

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Origincollection belge
EthnyLega
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood, plant fibre
Height cm53
Width9 cm
Weight0.43 Kg
Socle includedYes

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