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Tribal art > African mask > Fang Mask

Ngil's Fang Mask (N° 18724)

Collection African tribal art.
Designed to unmask sorcerers, this mask bleached with kaolin, sculpted on the eve of ceremonies, expresses the desire to capture the mysteries of the night and intimidate the opposing forces. Accompanied by words, gestures, dances and sacrifices, it also intervened during initiations out of sight of laymen. Velvety matte patina, very fine cracks at the top do not detract from this mask in excellent condition. Height on base : 47 cm.
The appearance of these masks usually coated with kaolin (the white color evokes the power of the ancestors), in the middle of the night, could cause fear. This type of mask was used by the Ngil male society which no longer exists today. This secret society was in charge of initiations and fought against witchcraft. Ngil was a rite of purifying fire symbolized by the gorilla. Guarantor of peace, it also set the seasons, the location of villages and the conditions of exploitation of agricultural land. The wearers of these masks, always in large numbers, appeared at night, lit by torches. Their intervention was also linked to the judicial function by pointing out the culprits of bad deeds within the village. The Fang ethnic group, established in a region stretching from Yaoundé in Cameroon to Ogooué in Gabon, has never had political unity. Clan cohesion was maintained through religious and judicial associations such as the so and ngil.  

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OriginCollection française G.
EthnyFang
Countrygabon
Material(s)wood
Height33
Width20
Weight1.25 Kg
Estimated datingmid-xx°
Socle includedYes

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