African art > Mask > Masque Kumu
Masque Kumu, Komo (N° 17943)
Color alernance for this nsembu mask from the Kisangani region, e.g. Stanleyville, R.D.C., used by the sorcerer's society nkunda, whose ritual ceremonies included the taking of hallucinogenic drugs. These masks appeared in pairs, male and female. The annual hunts were also an opportunity to show off the masks, and among them those associated with the leopard and the monkey. Abraded velvety patina.
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The Kumu, Bakumu and Komo, live mainly in the North-East and central Areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Their Bantu language is komo or kikomo. Several ethnic groups are closely intertwined, with similar associations: the Mbole, the Yela, the Lengola, and the Metoko. Their artistic production also has great similarities with that of the Metoko and Lengola. Their divination masks were displayed during the closing ceremonies of the initiation and circumcision of the young people of the society nkunda . It was in the Maniema region around the Lualaba River and the Great Lakes that Lega sculpture exerted its influence extensively. A costume made up of bark textiles and plant fibres concealed the wearer. Biebuck would have noticed a great similarity between the rituals accompanying the appearance of Kumu masks and those of the masks muminia of the Lega.Litt. : " The Soul of Africa S. Diakonoff; Art and Life in Africa C.D. Roy.
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