African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Luba Mask

Luba Kifwebe Mask (N° 19752)

Emblematic of the sculpture of the Lubas of the east along the Luvua River (D.R.C.), this type of African mask of semi-globular structure presents similarities with the masks of the Songye. However, they did not have the same function. These African masks are called "bifwebe". They appeared during funerals and investitures. Streaks coated with white clay are engraved on the surface. Matt patina. Height on base : 46 cm. They performed during the ritual ceremonies of the kazanzi society, responsible for fighting witchcraft. "Bifwebe" (Sing.: kifwebe) would moreover mean, according to C. Faïk-Nzuji, "to chase death". Worn with a voluminous ruff of raffia and animal skins that concealed the dancer, this mask was generally danced in the company of a zoomorphic mask. For the Luba, white is synonymous with a relationship with the spiritual world, through the evocation of the moon that the circular shape of the object evokes.  

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Originex-collection belge
EthnyLuba
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood
Height34
Width31
Weight2.15 Kg
Estimated dating2ème halfxx°
Socle includedYes

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