(DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO OR ANGOLA; CENTRAL AFRICA)
This mask comes from an extensive complex of related masking traditions at the mouth of the great Congo (Zaire) River. This example can be attributed to the Vili or Yombe ethnic group within the" Kongo" complex of peoples. These masks have an underlying naturalism; prominent, alert eyes; bold mouth; and pigmented surface, often with two or three contrasting colors. Compared to other ritual objects from this area, masks are relatively uncommon.
These masks are known primarily for their activities during initiations and funerals. They also take part in judicial punishments. This authentic mask has age and a long period of use. There is pigment loss and abrasions in some areas.
Collected by Charles D. Miller III of St. James, NY
Height: 11 ¼ inches
Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000.
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