Kwese Wood and Raffia Initiation Mask. Gungu. Kwilu River. DRC. Congo
This is an initiation ceremonial mask from the Kwese people. This group is governed by a group of chiefs . . . from everyday life to agriculture.
Masks play a crucial role in protecting boys during the vulnerable period between boyhood and manhood. Kwese masks have a heart-shaped face and – when not used or worn by ceremonial dancers during initiation and circumcision rites – were kept in fetish houses where offerings are made to them. Notice the neck cloth.
I would consider this in museum-quality condition although there are traces of use inside and out. Circa 1970s.
For the Serious Collector. Stand not included.