Ornate Chokwe Pwo Mask 19″ w/ Raffia – DR Congo – African Art



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This mask was created in the style of the Chokwe people of DRC. The mask features an elegant face with typical scarification and metal studs. She has hair made of woven vegetable fiber and decorations of beads and cowrie shells. The wooden mask measures 14.5 inches tall, 19 inches including raffia, and weighs 3.5 pounds. The piece is in good condition with minor imperfections. The mask does not come with a stand but one can be added for an additional fee – please inquire.

Type of Object

Face Mask

Country of Origin

DR Congo




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

Approximate Age



14.5" mask | 19" including raffia






3.5 lbs

Overall Condition

Good with minor imperfections

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.