Item offered:

Kuba / Biombo Helmet Mask
(DR Congo)



From our personal collection, on offer is this stately helmet mask from the Kuba/Biombo peoples of the DR Congo. Such bell-shaped masks are worn during initiation rites & at funerals.

The face & forehead have been painted with a classic triangular motif, typical of the Kuba & Biombo, as well as the neighboring Eastern Pende. Stripes under both coffee-bean-shaped eyes represent tears. A series of protruding nodules appear on both sides of the head. Atop the mask is a crown adorned with cowrie shells. An elaborately beaded & cowrie-shelled fiber skirt is attached to the full circumference of the bottom rim of the piece.

Despite a few imperfections, none of which detract from the mask's appearance, this handsome piece is in good overall condition. A few of the cowrie shells (a total of 7) are missing; there are some scrapes & chips (please see photos); & there are a couple of dry age cracks to the back of the mask. Nearly all of the intricate beadwork is still intact. The mask displays beautifully.

wood, cowrie shells,
beads, vegetal fibers

Approximate dimensions:
(with beaded skirt)
17" H x 8" W x 12" D

Estimated age:
30+ years

Total shipping weight:
ca. 13-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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