Your search for: mask returned 76 results

Diphomba (Diviner's Mask)

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A respected member of the Yombe is the nganga diphomba, a specialist who seeks out the cause of various problems, from crime and accidents to death and drought. Nganga diphomba were held in incredibly high esteem, without equals in their ability to...


Beete (Celebration Mask)

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The Kwele (or Bekwyel) are an ethnic group residing around 100 miles north of the equator along the borderlands of Gabon, Republic of the Congo, and Cameroon. This was a region famed for its harsh climate and had traditionally been notoriously...


Sukuru (Vertical Mask)

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Mumuye masks are traditionally worn during the initiation dances of young males, as well as at other major community celebrations such as harvest festivals and funerals. Mumuye men aspire to pass through seven initiation ceremonies, each marking...


Ngil ('Face of the Ngil' Mask)

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The Ngil was a roving militia, primarily focused on finding and neutralising malevolent sorcerers. The group acted as the guarantor of social stability and security for its people, while the sorcerers they hunted were believed to be possessed by an...


Karikpo (Crop Fertility Mask)

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Sculpture is central to the culture and traditions of the Ogoni, a people native to Rivers State, Nigeria. While the themes and styles of sculpture differ between regions, most fall into one of seven categories: Small masks with jaws and...


Yu (Family Mask)

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Guro culture is famed for its ornate masquerades, both religious and secular. In religious ceremonies, masks are worn representing idealised ancestors. There are three sacred masks usually on display, centring around the Zamble, a mythical elder...


Dege (Black Monkey Mask)

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Dogon masks come in many forms, from those made of fibre or wood, and in the shape of animals, humans, and abstract creations. Before painting, the wooden masks are known as ajugo nüyü meaning "mask dead." Once painted, they become lajugo...


Mbubu (Calabash Mask)

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The word mbubu refers only to this ceremonial gourd mask. It is worn during a secret initiation ceremony known as bkpe in the southern Afikpo villages, Kpogrikpo and Anohia. The Nkporo Ada wear similar calabash masks, with vertical fibre extensions,...


Mvudi (Celebratory Mask)

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The Aduma are a small ethnic group located on the upper Ogooué River in southeastern Gabon to which the mvudi mask belongs. Oral traditions about the origin of the mask make mention of the Mount Ngouadi region in the Ivindo...


Ikwara (Judge Mask)

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Ikwara is a black mask used as an agent of social control originating from Ngounié in South Gabon. Also called ikwara-mokulu, its name means “mask of the night,” and its black colour is associated with malicious forces,...


So'o (Chimpanzee-Human Mask)

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The so’o mask, or sokomutu in Swahili (and sometimes referred to as mwisi gwa so’o, suku muntu or ibombo ya soho in some sources), belongs to the Hemba people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. So’o means...


Olojufoforo (Ancestor Mask)

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The oloyiya (meaning ‘owner of combs’ also called okyiya, or epa are) mask is a ceremonial mask worn by the Yoruba people. These masks are a type of Epa mask from the Ekiti province in Nigeria, used in week-long,...


Makunda (Initiation Mask)

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Makunda (also called n-khanda, m-khanda, longwa or nzo longo) is the initiation society used to transition male children into manhood. Yaka boys considered ready for initiation (called tundansi) are taken to a bush camp...


Kayamba ('The Cunning Mask')

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The social and spiritual lives of the Lega people, are governed by a central initiation society known as Bwami; Bwami is responsible for teaching morality through community performances, dances and objects. The Bwami...


Ngongo (Initiation Mask)

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The Lwalu (some sources use ‘Lwalwa’) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola are primarily known as mask makers. Sculptors occupy a privileged place in society (such as community chiefs) and are...


Ngongo (Initiation Mask)

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The Lwalu (some sources use ‘Lwalwa’) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola are primarily known as mask makers. Sculptors occupy a privileged place in society (such as community chiefs) and are...


Ngongo (Initiation Mask)

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The Lwalu (some sources use ‘Lwalwa’) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola are primarily known as mask makers. Sculptors occupy a privileged place in society (such as community chiefs) and are...


Ndunga ('Wife of the Day' Mask)

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The Woyo (and Vili) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola, make use of wooden masks,  banana leaf and feather costumes called ndunga. The masks and costumes are worn by members of Bandunga (also called Bakama Ba...


Moghondzi (Ancestor Mask)

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The Vuvi of Gabon are a small ethnic group between the Offoué and Lolo Rivers. Like their Kota, Fang and Punu neighbours, the Vuvi worship and venerate ancestors through a number of rituals and ceremonies. The practice of...


Loniakê (Animal Totem Mask)

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The Tussian (called Tusiã, Tusian, Toussian, and Tusya, in various sources) are a small ethnic group in Burkina Faso. All men and some women within the community must be initiated into the Dó (also called Dou) association....


Karan-Wemba (Ancestor Mask)

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The Mossi of Bukina Faso and the Dogon of Mali make use of karan-wemba masks.

For the Dogon, the masks represent a Yasigine or Satimbe, an elderly woman who, as part of the mask society, has been part of two Sigi...


Okuyi (Female 'Mourning' Mask)

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The Punu and Lumbo of the Gabonese Republic are matrilineal; they trace their lines of descent through the women of the community. As such, female ancestors are venerated and the ‘first’ female ancestor—the...


Mblo (Entertainment Mask)

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The Baule of modern day Ivory Coast perform a number of dances for village entertainment; one such performance is known as Mblo. Mblo is performed during times of stress, social anxiety, or political reversals, to bring relief...


Kore (Animal Mask)

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The social, economic and spiritual lives of Bamana men, in Southwestern Mali, are governed by six initiation societies collectively known as Dyow (also called Jow, sing. Dyo or Jo). The six societies are N’tomo (also called...


Albarga (Old Man Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However, due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Kasangu (Warrior Mask)

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The Mugongo society of warriors is responsible for the protection of Salampasu communities; society members protect against invasion from rival clans or other external forces. To become a member of Mugongo, Salampasu boys must...


Mukinka (Warrior Mask)

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The Mugongo society of warriors is responsible for the protection of Salampasu communities; society members protect against invasion from rival clans or other external forces. To become a member of Mugongo, Salampasu boys must...


Kifwebe (Power Mask)

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The Bwadi Bwa Kifwebe male society is responsible for maintaining control, order and rule among the Songye people of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Community leaders makes use of witchcraft (buchi) and magic (masende) to...


Kifwebe (Power Mask)

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The Bwadi Bwa Kifwebe male society is responsible for maintaining control, order and rule among the Songye people of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Community leaders makes use of witchcraft (buchi) and magic (masende) to...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the town Afikpo, opa nwa (also called agbogho okumkpa or agbogho mma; meaning ‘carrying child’ or ‘hold child’; often referred to as ‘Queen...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in Afikpo towns, okpesu umuruma (meaning ‘frighten children’; also called ihu ori, meaning ‘face ugly’) masks are worn by older performers at Okumkpa...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the town Afikpo, nne mgbo (meaning ‘mother of Mgbo‘) masks are worn by young boys and adult men of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society during annually Okumkpa ceremonies...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in Afikpo towns, nnade okumkpa (meaning ‘father of Okumkpa‘) masks are worn by senior and junior leaders of Okumkpa ceremonies. Nnade okumpa masks are danced annually by...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in Afikpo towns, mma ji (meaning ‘knife yam’ – also called mma ubi meaning ‘knife farm’ or ikwum) masks are used in a number of different plays and...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in Afikpo towns, mkpe (meaning ‘horns’) masks are worn by adult men (usually musicians) of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society. Mkpe masks are danced annually by masqueraded...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in Afikpo towns, ibibio (meaning ‘beautiful woman’) masks are worn by adult men of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society. Ibibio masks are danced annually by masqueraded men...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the town Afikpo, beke (also called mbeke or bekee in some sources; meaning ‘white man’) masks are one of the most commonly used masks worn by young men of the Mmwo (or...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the towns Afikpo, Ada, Edda and Amaseri, igri (also called okonkpo or egede) masks are among the rarest of masks worn by older male members of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society....


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the town Afikpo, acali masks are one of the first masks worn by young men of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society. Acali masks are danced annually during Okumkpa ceremonies to...


Okumkpa (Theatre Mask)

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Found in Southeastern Igboland, primarily in the town Afikpo, mba masks are among the most common masks of that region. Used by older Igbo boys of the Mmwo (or Mma) secret society, mba masks are danced annually during Okumkpa...


Mbuya (Village Mask)

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Mbuya village masks are used to entertain a community during non-ritual festivities. Once used during mukanda initiation ceremonies to mark the end of male circumcision rituals, mbuya masquerades are now used to highlight a...


Goli (Entertainment Mask)

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The Baule of modern day Ivory Coast perform a number of dances for village entertainment; one such performance is known as goli. A recent import from the Wan ethnic group (believed to come into use among the Baule after...


Goli (Entertainment Mask)

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The Baule of modern day Ivory Coast perform a number of dances for village entertainment; one such performance is known as goli. A recent import from the Wan ethnic group (believed to come into use among the Baule after...


Goli (Entertainment Mask)

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The Baule of modern day Ivory Coast perform a number of dances for village entertainment; one such performance is known as goli. A recent import from the Wan ethnic group (believed to come into use among the Baule after...


Doho (Serpent Mask)

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Bwa legend has it that the world was abandoned by God (Difini or Dobweni) after he was injured by a woman. To enable continued communication between man and himself, God sent his son, Do to earth to act as an intermediary....


Makunda (Initiation Mask)

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Makunda (also called n-khanda, m-khanda, longwa or nzo longo) is the initiation society used to transition male children into manhood. Yaka boys considered ready for initiation (called tundansi) are taken to a bush camp...


Ngaady aMwash (Mweel Mask)

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Legend has it that Woot (the first man created by God) contracted an illness, ran to the forest with his sister (Mweel) for recovery and they eventually emerged out of the forest as husband and wife after an incestuous...


Yehoti (Butterfly Mask)

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Bwa legend has it that the world was abandoned by God (Difini or Dobweni) after he was injured by a woman. To enable continued communication between man and himself, God sent his son, Do to earth to act as an intermediary....


Duho (Hawk Mask)

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Bwa legend has it that the world was abandoned by God (Difini or Dobweni) after he was injured by a woman. To enable continued communication between man and himself, God sent his son, Do to earth to act as an intermediary....


Mbuya (Village Mask)

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Mbuya village masks are used to entertain a community during non-ritual festivities. Once used during mukanda initiation ceremonies to mark the end of male circumcision rituals, mbuya masquerades are now used to highlight a...


Mbuya (Village Mask)

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Mbuya village masks are used to entertain a community during non-ritual festivities. Once used during mukanda initiation ceremonies to mark the end of male circumcision rituals, mbuya masquerades are now used to highlight a...


Makunda (Initiation Mask)

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Makunda (also called n-khanda, m-khanda, longwa or nzo longo) is the initiation society used to transition male children into manhood. Yaka boys considered ready for initiation (called tundansi) are taken to a bush camp...


Mbuya (Village Mask)

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Mbuya village masks are used to entertain a community during non-ritual festivities. Once used during mukanda initiation ceremonies to mark the end of male circumcision rituals, mbuya masquerades are now used to highlight a...


Mbuya (Village Mask)

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Mbuya village masks are used to entertain a community during non-ritual festivities. Once used during mukanda initiation ceremonies to mark the end of male circumcision rituals, mbuya masquerades are now used to highlight a...


Nwantantay (Water Spirit Mask)

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Bwa legend has it that the world was abandoned by God (Difini or Dobweni) after he was injured by a woman. To enable continued communication between man and himself, God sent his son, Do to earth to act as an intermediary....


Samana (Foreign Warrior Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Walu (Antelope Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Sim (Spirit Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Kanaga (Celestial Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Sirige ('Storied House' Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


Wara (Great Mask)

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The Dogon once believed that death did not exist, believing instead that immortal humans lived as serpents. However due to mankind breaking a religious restriction, people developed limited life-spans and eventually died. The...


N'tomo (Ancestor Mask)

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The social, economic and spiritual lives of Bamana men, in Southwestern Mali, are governed by six initiation societies collectively known as Dyow (also called Jow sing. Dyo or Jo). The six societies are N’tomo (also...


Kpelie (Ancestor Mask)

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The social, economic and spiritual lives of Senufo men are governed by an overarching initiation society known as Poro. A Senufo man must pass through all stages of the initiation society to be considered a rounded man with...


Bedu (Moon Plank Mask)

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Found among three main ethnic groups, the Nafana, the Kulango and the Degho, bedu masks (meaning ‘moon’) are believed to represent the physical manifestation of a domesticated buffalo-like spirit...


Efe ('Joker' Headdress)

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The Efe ceremony is held annually in conjunction with the Gelede festival across western Yorubaland including the villages and cities Ketu, Egbado, Ohori, Anago and Awori. Before the Gelede festival takes place in the...


Mbap Mteng (Elephant Mask)

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Bamilekeland is divided into a number of smaller kingdoms each ruled by it’s own king (fon). The Bamileke believe that this ruling fon is an embodiment of the creator god and of past ancestors and as such possesses...


Chihongo (Spirit of Wealth Mask)

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Found amongst the Chokwe of Angola, these masculine masks (Chihongo, sometimes called Cihongo, meaning ‘spirit of wealth’) are used to symbolise wealth and power. The masqueraders wearing the mask pay homage to male...


Mwana Pwo (Young Woman Mask)

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Found amongst the Chokwe of Angola, these feminine masks (Pwo meaning ‘woman’ – an adult woman that has given birth and Mwana Pwo meaning ‘young woman’ – youthful, feminine beauty) are used to pay homage...


Bugle (War Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Kagle (Animal Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and ‘behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits...


Gägon (Bird Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Bagle (Dancing Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Zakpai (Fire Prevention Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Gunyege (Racing Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Tankagle (Entertainment Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...


Deangle (Circumcision Camp Mask)

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The Dan believe that ‘in’ and behind’ this world exists an essential force called dü which is usually described as a power that is present in all aspects of the world. Dü manifests itself as invisible spirits which may...