African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Zela mask
Zoomorphic mask Luba/Zela Mukisi a kukaya (N° 20622)
This African kifwebe (pl.bifwebe) mask, decorated with striations, representing a bird (probably a wild guinea fowl, associated with fertility), appeared in the company of a circular kifwebe mask equipped with a voluminous raffia collar hiding the dancer.
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Height on base: 43 cm.
These masks were performed during different traditions: investitures, funerals, and rites against witchcraft in the different initiatory societies. In the eastern part of the Luba region, important ceremonies are held in honor of the clan's ancestors, deceased chiefs, and the new moon. They did indeed have some zoomorphic masks associated with the kifwebe dance. They performed during the ritual ceremonies of the kazanzi society, responsible for fighting witchcraft. Offerings are then made to the spirits of nature, intermediaries between the group and the ancestors.
Matt patina. Erosions.
Once subject to the Luba, then the Lundas, the Zela have adopted many of their customs and traditions. Established between the Luvua River and Lake Kisale, they are now organized into four chiefdoms under the supervision of leaders of Luba origin. They venerate a primordial couple frequently represented in statuary, mythical ancestors, and make offerings to the spirits of nature.
Ref: "Luba" 5 Continents. Rooberts; "Kifwebe" F. Neyt, ed. 5Continents.
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|Country||rdc ex zaire|
|Estimated dating||2ème halfxx°|
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