1 in stock
This mask was created in the style of the Salmpasu people of DRC. The mask features a copper braided face and a crown made from vegetable fiber. The mask is 14 inches tall, 26 inches on custom stand, and weighs 4.5 pounds.
Mask and Stand
Wood, vegetable fiber, braided metal
14” mask, 26" on stand
Imperfections and wear and tear. See photos or inquire for more information.
“The 60,000 Salampasu people live on the frontier between the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire) and Angola. They maintain strong commercial and cultural relations with their southern neighbours, the Tschokwe (Chokwe) and the Lunda, to whom they pay tribute. The Salampasu are ultimately governed by a few high-ranking chiefs who are, in turn, assisted by territorial chiefs, who supervise village chiefs. This hierarchical power structure is counterbalanced by a warriors’ society. The Salampasu live mostly from hunting, but the women do some farming.”
Baquart, Jean-Baptiste. The Tribal Arts of Africa. New York: Thames and Hudson Inc. 1998. Print.
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Salampasu masks are famous and are characterized by a bulging forehead, slanted eyes, a triangular nose and rectangular mouth displaying filed teeth. The age of the masks can be determined by their stylistic variations. The oldest type has keloids and an encrusted red patina; a later style does not have scarifications while the most recent type characteristically has simplified features and is made of thicker wood. Sometimes the masks were covered with copper plate and had vegetable fiber bells attached to the chin. They were used for initiation ceremonies related to the warriors’ society.