Dimensions: H:18.5" W:8.7" L:5.9" Weight: 2.6 lbs.
Beaded Fang Masks from Gabon - These masks are hand carved out of wood, covered with colorful beads and cowrie shells by the Fang people. These masks are used during rites of passage initiation ceremonies by the Ngil secret society. The bright colors represent prosperity and good luck. Fang masks and figures are distinguished by their schematic simplicity.
About the Tribe
The Fang tribe also spelled Fãn is a Bantu-speaking ethnic group living in the forests south of the Sanaga River at the southernmost tip of Cameroon, the mainland of Equatorial Guinea, and the forests south of the Ogooué River estuary in northern Gabon. They often retain the bones and skulls of their ancestors because they believe that these skeletal remains are still in power. This power is extremely powerful in the tribe's daily activities and important moments such as initiation rites, or in cases of conflict or death, or for advice on more mundane matters such as hunting or fishing. The Fang referred to this practice as bieri, and they usually kept only male ancestor relics in the bark containers.