Kifwebe Mask. Songye People. Côte D’Ivoire.

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  • $360

Kifwebe Mask
Songye People
Côte d’Ivoire

Carved from a single piece of wood.
Earth paint.

16” x 8” x 8”

Bwadi bra Kifwebe is a secret society of masked men. In the community, these men were known for their use of magic (Buki or Buchi) and sorcery (Masende). Buki and Masende magic differ from witchcraft; these types of magic are inherited or obtained either by will or unconsciously. In order to become a member of the Bwadi bra Kifwebe, all applicants must undergo an initiation process. During this process, initiates must learn and identify a secret esoteric language. They must undergo a radical and violent experience in order to become less fearful of the unknown and learn their roles within the subject to Bwadi bra Kifwebe. Some of the Bwadi bra Kifwebe help regulate and maintain political order and balance between the chief and his communities. The Bwadi bra Kifwebe maintain balance within the community by conducting masquerades, rituals and rites such as initiation rituals, circumcisions and funerals.

The dances of the kifwebe dancers are meant to encourage social conformity within the community showing its people how one should behave in their society.

The Kifwebe Mask is a representation of the African culture and heritage, embodying the values and traditions of the Songye People. This handmade mask is a perfect addition to any culture or ethnicity collection. With the modification of no alterations, this mask is a true reflection of the craftsmanship and dedication of the Côte D’Ivoire.

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David Dixon and the Strange Imports Team