This 19th-early 20th Century carved wood Chokwe (Pwo) mask comes from Angola or the Democratic Republic of Congo. The mask was based on religious beliefs held by the Chokwe people and represents a female character that invoked the protective spirit of an ancestor. Pwo's joint performance with her male counterpart, Cihongo, brings fertility and prosperity to a community. Stylistic features include the slit eyes, filed teeth, and facial scarification marks on the cheeks and forehead. Abundant plant fiber coiffure. Measures 23 in. long and the mask itself is 9 7/8 in. high x 7 1/4 in. wide.
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