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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Kuba Masks : Kuba Ivory Minganji Passport Mask
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Kuba Ivory Minganji Passport Mask - PF.3896
Origin: Southeastern Congo
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 1.75" (4.4cm) high x 1.5" (3.8cm) wide
Collection: African
Medium: Ivory

Location: United States
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In the Kuba society, the sculptor's profession was handed down from father to son. Their work was an essential part in ceremonies for millet-planting, circumcision, initiation and other rituals where a variety of masks were used. Ancestors were also honored in masked celebrations of the minganji, held in the chiefs' hut or on the edge of a forest. The passport mask was worn on the arm by dancers in such events. It was a mark of prestige and much admired. The dark amber color of this mask gives it a mysterious quality. Details such as markings on the cheeks (indicating ritual scarification), and the X-pattern on the headband may imitate realistic attributes of the person who wore the mask. The Kuba enjoy a reputation for their fine work in ivory pendants, and looking at this lovely mask, it is easy to understand why. - (PF.3896)


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