Old Lega Mask – Lukungu lwa Tata – DR Congo – Former Belgian Collection


Bone. Cm. 7,4 (2.91″); grams 18,4 (0.26 oz.).

This Lega mask is known as Lukungu lwa Tata, which literally means ‘skull of my father.’ Elephant ivory or bone is reserved for this small mask type.

Lukungu are bestowed by the initiation society called Bwami on certain males considered to have attained the utmost virtue and wisdom. Different masks are bestowed as a member moves up in the ranks of the hierarchy and represents the insignia of the peak level of male initiation (kindi). Few men achieve this highest level.

These sacred masks are displayed on rare occasions and are not generally worn on the body, but hung on fences. After a kindi owner dies, his mask is displayed at his grave until a replacement is ‘chosen’ from his lineage by Bwami members.

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Additional information

Weight150 g