Today we are happy to offer for sale a best-in-class wonderful old African Congo Songye Kefwebe wood mask on stand!
This wonderful piece is a tribal relic the Songye people (sometimes written Songe) a Bantu ethnic group from the central Democratic Republic of the Congo. Kifwebe masks participated in initiations and played a role in establishing order in society, used in benevolent practices that purify the community of the evil spirits of sorcerers.
In performance, this type of mask was complemented by a costume ensemble comprising woven textiles, animal pelts, and plant fibers, which covered the dancer’s body. This large carved wood mask features geometrical carving with slit eyes and rectangular projecting mouth. The piece is decorated with carved grooved stripes, and features traces of hand-painted decoration; the eyes and low crest on head are painted black. The mask is mounted to a detachable bespoke mid-century modern ebonized oak museum-quality stand and is ready to be displayed and enjoyed.
Mask presents very well and is in very good antique condition, with minor wear/scuffing and patina commensurate with age. There is minor loss to painted finish. There are a few very minor small stable age-related fractures on wood. This fabulous figure was acquired by a local anthropology professor during one of his many trips to the African continent many years ago.
Dimensions: 22-1/2″ in height (with stand); 9″ in depth, 7-1/2″ in width