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Bene Lulua Helmet Mask Congo Zaire Lulua African Art

Product #: 119277
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Title Bene Lulua Helmet Mask Congo Zaire Lulua African Art
Materials Wood
Made In Democratic Republic of Congo
Approximate Age Mid 20th Century
Dimensions Height: 16 Inches
Width: 10 Inches
Depth: 7 Inches
Overall Condition Good

Face mask. Bene Lulua. Democratic Republic of Congo/(Zaire).  Wood and pigment.Among the Lulua, earlier known also as the Bena Lulua, masks are rarely experienced and where known are given short definitions of how they are used such as during the circumcision of young boys or other rites of passage. This lack of information is due in fact that there are simply few masks recorded among the Lulua. This mask is identified as part of the Lulua complex of people due to the shared details of facial marking and hair style and the shape of the face and hair. The Lulua are well know for their elaborate body marking and facial scarification through their sculptures and early 19th century photographs. This mask has round marks on the cheeks and bulging forehead similar to Lulua sculpture. The 'spike' of hair sticking up from the top of the hair is similar to Lulua hair style. The treatment of the eyes, ears and face are also taken from Lulua figural sculpture. Lulua sculpture, especially the maternity figures known as 'chibola' show a woman with a distended abdomen and her body complexly marked. Males figures are equally as well marked to display the carving of the body into a living sculptural form. This face mask with it's expressionistic sculptural forms and well carved details conveys some of the 'body art' so well developed among the Lulua.