Illustration principale
Mask, Luba
Luba, Democratic Republic of Congo, 1900-1950
Wood, pigments, hair, fiber, cord
Height : 37 cm

Provenance : Liliane and Michel Durand-Dessert collection, Paris

Exhibition : L’art au Futur Antérieur, Musée de Grenoble, 10 july-4 Oct. 2004
Fragments du Vivant, La Monnaie de Paris, 10-24 Sept. 2008

Publication : L’art au Futur Antérieur, Liliane et Michel Durand-Dessert,2004, n° 40
Fragments du Vivant, Sculptures africaines dans la collection Durand-Dessert, Jean-Louis Paudrat, Liliane et Michel Durand-Dessert, 2008, p. 171-172

Publication : "Masken"
(M. Doustar, 2015), n°16
About this showpiece of their collection exhibited in the Musée de Grenoble in 2004, Liliane and Michel Durand-Dessert write : “ this monkey mask carved in a naturalistic way is a masterpiece in terms of geometrical construction. It is quite hollowed and ends with a part of trapezoidal form figuring the neck. The top of the skull goes down in a triangle shape figuring the arch of the eyebrows. It is striated with transversal curves which join a median line in light relief. The line continues in the
middle of the face with the bridge of the nose; the bridge ends with two nostrils joining the middle of the upper chops; the muzzle, wide open on the teeth is of oval shape, and its corners join the lateral parts of the face. The triangle shape of the nose is the same as the forehead except upside down. And the pupils are reminiscent of the nostrils. The oval shape of the eyes is echoed by that of the muzzle. The profile shows the whole geometric perfection even better; the face is concave and the eyes are engraved rather than carved. Despite the slight concavity of the cheeks, the curve which outlines the arch of the eyebrows continues into an arch to the muzzle. The curve is underlined by the placement of the hair, and it is similar to that of the nose. This mask was certainly carved by a Songye artist for the Luba people; regarding the treatment of plain and striated volumes and surfaces it shows the mastery typical of this ethnic group; the power of the animal, expressed through the projection of the face, is qualified by the softness of the profile, and a certain sadness in the gaze. The interweaving of masses and volumes is quite elaborated even though the relevance and the sensitivity of the curves are at their highest degree of achievement. This duality expresses the essence of the art – when art reaches the harmony between naturalism and abstraction, the observation of the real and its conceptualization.”
Price on request
Illustration secondaire