Punu Okuyi mask.
Rare: the item is in near perfect condition.
Face very balanced and classic, with closed eyes.
Item from private Dutch collection, originally purchased in Gabon.
Shipping : Insured, tracked and traced
Punu masks represent idealized female ancestors' faces. The white color of the mask is genderless; white is a symbol for peace, deities, spirits of the dead, and the afterlife. It is thus the predominating color in funeral celebrations and memorials. Therefore the masks were worn during funerals. They appeared also in the magical rites whose function was to unmask sorcerers. The masks have realistic, mostly white but sometimes black faces with protruding pursed lips, globular protruding eyes incised with a curve, high-domed foreheads, and characteristic rigid high coiffures reflecting the Punu women's hair styles.
The Punu reside on the left bank of the Upper Ngoume River (Gabon) and belong to the group of tribes known as Shira which were originally part of the Luango kingdom of Angola. With the Eshira, the Lumbo, the Vili, the Galoa, and the Vungu people, the Punu migrated northwards during the 18th century and settled in the area where they continue to inhabit to this day.
- Etnisk gruppe / kultur
- Distrikt / land
- Andre halvdel av 1900-tallet
- Glimrende tilstand, nesten ubrukt med minimale tegn på bruk
- Selges med stativ
- 32×17×15 cm