Item offered:

Chokwe Pwo Face Mask
(DR Congo)


On offer from our personal collection is this superb older Mwana Pwo face mask from the Chokwe peoples of the DR Congo. Perhaps the best-known style of mask produced by the Chokwe, the Pwo masks symbolize tribal female ancestors & are worn by male dancers during ritual ceremonies.

Imbued with great dignity & a deeply mature spirit, especially noble facial features characterize this soulful mask. Representing tears, double rows of raised scarifications are present on either side of & under each coffee-bean-shaped eye, continuing vertically down the cheeks. The slender nose is beautifully sculpted. The mask's forehead is accented by a distinctive raised cruciform - or cingelyengelye - framed by lateral raised scarifications. A triple-plaited coiffure forms a crown-like structure above the brow. While the prominent chin is strong & dramatic, the agressively open mouth bares sharply filed teeth. Attachment holes perforate the back rim of the mask.

Despite a few imperfections in the wood, including old nicks, chips, & dry age cracks (including a split & a crack at the site of a couple of worn attachment holes at the top of the back rim, an old chip on the mask's left nostril & one on the chin), the piece is in very good overall condition. The mask shows excellent patina & signs of handling- & age-related wear. With its striking appearance evident when viewed from all angles, this powerful mask makes a great display & would be a superb addition to any serious collection.


Approximate dimensions:
10.75" H x 7" W x 4" D

Estimated age:
50+ years

Total shipping weight:
ca. 7-lbs.
Stand not included - used for
display purposes only.

All sales final.


All items carefully packed & shipped after payment received & cleared via PayPal. Unless otherwise specified in the item description, shipping to the U.S. will generally be via USPS Priority Mail, USPS Parcel Post, or UPS. Expedited shipping upgrade is available & optional. Will ship worldwide, with international shipping rates to be determined by buyer's location. Insurance optional/additional. Seller not responsible for any damages incurred during shipping nor for any Customs-related fees for non-U.S. shipments.
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