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Antique African Songye Kifwebe Mask with Expressive Face

Antique African Songye Kifwebe Mask with Expressive Face

Regular price $450.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $450.00 USD
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An impressively sized Songye Male Kifwebe mask hailing from the Congo and dating back to the 1920s. In the rich tapestry of Bantu culture in Central Africa, the Kifwebe mask carries profound symbolism.

Male Kifwebe masks played a pivotal role in various ceremonies, including initiation rites, circumcision ceremonies, enthronements, and the dignified burials of esteemed chiefs. The mask's rugged, weathered visage is laden with significance, representing the mystical realm and the spirits that are believed to emanate from it.

This mask is adorned with meticulously carved linear bands, alternating between stark white and natural wood hues. Its shape is distinguished by a tapering form, ascending from the eye level to a crest at the top and tapering downward to a refined, pointed chin.

A prominent, wedge-shaped nose in plain wood commands attention, while the mask's eyes take on a subtle, slanted coffee bean shape. The large, protruding rectangular mouth, centrally indented, is colored in a deep, resonant shade of red. Voluptuous lips in plain black provide a striking contrast.

The tall crested head confirms the mask's identity as a male Kifwebe. Noteworthy are the small apertures at the sides of the mask, which would have been employed to affix raffia stripes and leaves during ceremonies, enhancing the dramatic effect of the masquerade.

This remarkable artifact can be displayed on a stand or hung on a wall, preserving its cultural significance and artistry for all to admire.

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