African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Songye mask

Songye mask (N° 22046)

Visually emphasizing the projection of the features, a striated surface accompanies this masculine songye mask, which served as a protective charm. Like a beak, the parallelepiped mouth protrudes.
Matt patina, erosions.
Three types of African Kifwebe masks are listed: the masculine (kilume) generally with a high crest, the feminine (kikashi) would present a more modest or even absent crest, and finally the largest embodying power (kia ndoshi). In the 16th century, the Songyes migrated from the Shaba region to settle on the left bank of the Lualaba. Their society is organized in a patriarchal way. Their history is inseparable from that of the Luba, to whom they are related through common ancestors. Very present in their society, divination made it possible to discover sorcerers and to shed light on the causes of the misfortunes that struck individuals. Also used by the Luba, worn with a long costume and a long beard made of natural fibers, the Kifwebe masks acted as secret police in favor of power, so as to control individuals through magic. They appeared in besides during crucial stages of initiation ceremonies.
 

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Originex-collection française
EthnySongye
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood
Height cm23
Width14 cm
Weight0.20 Kg
Estimated dating2ème halfxx°
Socle inclusOptional

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