Elegant Chokwe Pwo Mask 20″ w/ Raffia – DR Congo – African Art



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This mask was carved in the style of a Pwo mask of the Chokwe people of DRC. The mask has a beautiful face with white pigment around her eyes and metal studs on her forehead and chin. Her coiffure is made up of woven vegetable fiber and is decorated with beads and cowrie shells. The wooden part of the mask measures 15.5 inches tall, 20 inches including raffia, and weighs 4.5 pounds. There is some scuffing and general wear and tear – please inspect photos. Stand not included but one can be added for an additional charge.

Type of Object

Face Mask

Country of Origin

DR Congo




Wood, pigment, vegetable fiber, metal, fabric, cowrie shells and beads

Approximate Age


Height (Inches)

15.5" mask, 20" including raffia

Width (Inches)


Depth (Inches)


Weight (Pounds)

4.5 lbs

Overall Condition

Some cracking, scuffing and general wear and tear throughout.

Tribe Information

About the Chokwe People

The Chokwe, with an estimated population of 1.3 million people, inhabit areas in Angola, DRC and Zambia. They are known by many names throughout the world, upwards of 30 different variations, all deriving from the name in which they call themselves, Kocokwe. Chokwe government is headed by a king called Mwana Ngana, with male and female societies regulating all aspects of life.

Read more about the Chokwe here.


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Additional Information

About the Pwo Mask

Pwo masks are representations of female ancestors who are worthy of honoring. She is danced in tandem with Cihongo, her male counterpart during initiation ceremonies and other prestigious events. Together, they embody the ideal beauty and are meant to bring fertility and prosperity to the community. Pwo illustrates the glory and saddness a mother feels when her son completes the initiation process into adulthood, shown by the scarification marks on her cheeks.