Lot: 360

Female face mask

D. R. Congo, Yombe / Sundi

Provenance Size Starting price / estimated price
Marc Leo Felix, Brussels, Belgium ("FX 980800") H: 11.8 inch 2500 EUR / 5000 EUR

wood, kaolin, tukula, black pigment, collection number "FX 980800", base

Felix remarked to this mask: "although the headdress is typically Yombe, as well as the red bandanna around the forehead, the mouth is more reminiscent of the Sundi".

The mask shows almost naturalistic portrait-like features. It depitcts a high-ranking lady of Yombe society or her spirit, the embodiment of idealized female beauty and virtue. The face is covered with white kaolin, both ritually sanctifying the object as well as physically beautifying it.


Felix, Marc L. (ed.), Kongo Kingdom Art, China 2003, 284 f.
Brown, H. Kellim, "Ritual Art From Southern Congo (Brazzaville)", Brussels, 2001, p. 2
Exhibited:

Brussels, Congo Gallery: "Ritual Art From Southern Congo (Brazzaville)", June - September 2001; Brussels, Congo Gallery: "La face cachée", 2006