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TitleLuba Round Kifwebe Mask DR Congo African Type of ObjectMaskCountry of OriginDR CongoPeopleLubaMaterialsWood, pigment, raffia fibersApproximate Age20th centuryDimensions7 inches Diam. x 4.75 inches Deep.Overall ConditionGood. Most ofÂ our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners. Â Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use.Â We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings.Â Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.Damage/RepairNatural wear and chips in places,Â scratches
Additional Information: A Luba Eastern round mask with striations similar to the ones found on Songye Kifwebe masks .This is a round version of the most famous of the Luba Kifwebe masks, made for the Bwadi Bwa Kifwebe Secret society that the Luba borrowed from the Songye. "Kifwebe" means "Mask" in the Songye language. Others types of masks found among the Luba include a rounded anthropomorphic black mask, a rounded human mask with horns, and a human mask with bird beak.
In general, Luba masks are called mukishi ya kuhakwa. They represent the spirit of death and usually appear as a male-female pair and dance wearing costumes made of animal skins and woven coverings. They are danced by the Luba during the full moon to honor their ancestors and also appear to dance at the funerals of chiefs and nobility. The Luba Eastern live in the Katanga province in the neighborhood of the Hemba, Buyu, Zela and other Luba subgroups.Recommended Reading: Nooter, M. N. and A. F. Roberts. 1996. Memory, Luba Art and the Making of History. Bacquart's TRIBAL ARTS OF AFRICA and Cornet's A SURVEY OF ZAIRIAN ART-THE BRONSON COLLECTION. Marc Leo Felix, Beauty and the Beasts. Kifwebe and Animal Masks of the Songye, Luba and Related People From the Collection of Stewart J. Warkov, New Jersey, 2003.
All content, including pictures, Copyright Africa Direct Inc., 2006
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