Luba-Hemba Mask


Luba-Hemba "soko Mutu" Gorilla inspired mask from DRC
Sales price £1,800.00


The Hemba are related to the Luba people of South Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. This mask was purchased in the then Congo in the 1970s and has been in the UK since. The mask would have belonged to an ancestor cult and used for dancing. Clearly inspired by Gorilla features, the wood is distressed although completely intact, some shiny patination remains visible on the side of the mask. A breathing hole placed through one of the nostrils suggests thhis would have be used for strenuous danincing. While similar masks can be seen in collections and museum the nose of this mask is distinctive and atypical of the form.