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    Kuba (Democratic Republic of Congo)
    Mask (Mukyeem or Mukenga)
    Sheet metal, wood, raffia cloth, European cloth, beads, cowry shells, monkey fur, fiber, leather
    Height: 20 ¼ inches Width: 13 ½ inches Depth:22 inches

    This imposing mask is a variant of the royal and chiefly Mwaash a mboy mask. At the top is a representation of an elephant trunk and two tusks, using the largest and most powerful animal of the region as a symbol for the exalted power of the hereditary ruler. "The mukyeem mask does not appear in the immediate vicinity of the King. But (is seen among several of the) other constituent peoples of the Kuba Kingdom. It performs at funerary rituals of notables and evokes death. The predominant white color of the cowrie shells serves as a sign of mourning and is associated with the dessicated bones of the ancestors. When the mask performs, red parrot feathers adorn the trunk's end..." (Frank Herreman in Frank Herreman and Constantijn Petridis. Face of the Spirits. Antwerp: Martial and Snoeck, 1993, p.136).

    The condition is quite good, but does show age stains and fading. The elaborate construction starts with a layered raffia cloth and heavy leather internal matrix. The face has thin sheet metal laid over the leather.

    Provenance: H. Bruce Greene II and family, Naples, Florida

    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2007
    7th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,370

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

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