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Tribal art > African mask > Luba mask

Luba Kifwebe mask (N° 20310)

This type of African Luba mask with a rounded structure has similarities with the Songye masks. However, they did not have the same function. This category of African masks is called "Bifwebe". They appeared during funerals and investitures. Abraded matt patina. Height on base: 42 cm.
Luba bifwebe masks appeared during ritual ceremonies of the kazanzi society, charged with combating magic for evil purposes. "Bifwebe" (Sing.: kifwebe) would moreover mean, according to C. Faïk-Nzuji, "to chase death". Worn with a voluminous raffia collar that concealed the dancer, this mask was generally danced in the company of a zoomorphic mask. For the Luba, white is synonymous with a relationship with the spiritual world, through the evocation of the moon that the circular shape of the object evokes.  

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OriginCollection P. Malisse
EthnyLuba
Countryrdc ex zaire
Material(s)wood
Height30
Width24
Weight0.55 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°
Socle includedYes

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