Kwele Mask


Kwele Mask


The Kwele masks with two large horns represent the antelope whose meat was eaten at the end of the 'beete' ritual. The 'beete' ritual, which lasted for a week, started with the men leaving for the forest to hunt antelopes, whose meat, which was seasoned with medicine, had to be eaten during the closing meal of the game.

The Kwele protect themselves against power of witchcraft with the 'beete' ritual, because they believe that all their personal and social ills are due to the influence of witchcraft.

The 'beete' is a ritual that involves purification by the spirits that are represented in the form of 'ekuk' masks. 'Ekuk' means 'spirits of the forest' and 'children of beete'.

Kwele faces are usually painted with white kaolin earth, a pigment associated by the Kwele with light and clarity, the two essential factors in the fight against evil.

It is made of carved wood and kaolin.

Length : 19 cm

Height : 62 cm

Width : 7.5 cm

Weight : 580 g

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