Ekuk Mask

Beete Mask: Ram
Type: mask
Materials: Pigments, Wood
Relevant Groups: Kwele

In Kwele communities, the leader of the familial grouping held their family relics in trust. When crises arose, threatening the community welfare, relics owned by all the members of the lineage were united in a purification rite. On such occasions, collective energies were directed towards the preparation of a communal feast and the performances of masked forest spirits, known as ekuk. From research in the region, it seems that masks were commissioned after the birth of a male child, to represent ekuk - a forest spirit, who would accompany the child when he entered the bush school. 


Tribal Sculpture, Barbier-Mueller Museum, 1995, p.146;L. Siroto, African Art and Leadership' 1972; A. LaGamma, Eternal Ancestors, 2007, p.290, fg.291

Ekuk Mask
Ekuk Mask
Ekuk Mask
Ekuk Mask