Punu Mukuyi Okuyi Mask, Gabon #171

$ 930.00 $ 1,860.00
Shipping calculated at checkout.
  • Punu Mukuyi Okuyi Mask, Gabon #171
  • In the vast regions of the Ngounié and Nyanga valleys, in the south and centre-south of Gabon, funerary ceremonies were the occasion for the so-called white Okuyi, Mukuyi or Mukudji masks - depending on the places - to be taken out.
  • Okuyi masks are carved in light-weighted softwood, whitened with white clay (formerly mixed with bone powder). They are the commemorative representations of dead ancestors, male or female. The fact that these masks may be gendered explains the masculine/feminine pairs.
  • Perched on tall wooden stilts, the dancer was dressed with wraparound skirts in raffia and cotton fabric. They would perform breath-taking acrobatic tricks all across the village and around the huts.
  • Okuyi masks could indifferently be seen by men, women and children, although the latter preferred to hide most of the time!
  • Men would mime fear by gesticulating and by threatening the mask, using sticks and throwing stones.
  • Measurements: 32×23×16 cm
  • Condition: Good