Democratic Republic of CongoMEDIUM:
Wood, pigment, fabric, fiber, fur, leather, copper, glass beads, seeds, shells.DIMENSIONS:
12" (30.5") / 16" (40.6 cm)CONDITION:
Stand not included.
The largest of three royal mask types, Bwoom represents the brother of the first king and lover of his brother's wife. Perhaps for this reason he is often a symbol of opposition to authority and a representative of the common man. Bwoom masks have huge, bulging foreheads, blind eyes covered with strips of beaded fabric and mouths covered with precious sheet copper. The wearer sees through the mask's nostrils. Cowrie shells, used as money, bright glass beads and geometric designs are also typical.
This dance mask is the second-ranking royal mask of the Kuba, the brother of Mwaash a mboy, the mask which represents the King. Mboom is the oldest Kuba mask type, dating from the eighteenth century. Royal Mboom masks are always heavily decorated, being covered with metal sheathing and beads. Mboom was in conflict with his brother. Mwaash a mboy mask represents the founding first King, Woot over the right to the throne and opposed his incestuous marriage with their sister, a union from which sprang the royal Bushoong dynasty which still rules.