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Superb Kwele Mask Gabon

Ekuk, with iron stand
Height 52 cm.

Superb Kwele Mask Gabon, with a recessed heart-shaped face framing narrow eyes. Has a triangular nose painted in red. Fine blackened patina contrasting with white kaolin on the facial plane. The residents of the equatorial forest of Central Africa primarily produced art that focused on ritual and cult, rather then objects that convey ideas of power and leadership. Though littel is known about Kwele people who live on the border between Gabon and D.R. of Congo, a legacy of rare masks has surfaced, consisting of highly stylized and abstract works. Ekuk masks were carried and shown to the audience during ceremonies and at the end of mourning periods. They were never worn.


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