Sunday, April 19, 2009

Ngil Masks of Fang. Cameroon and Gabon. African Art.

Fang people live in Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.

The Fang were Christianised before World War II.
Despite that a belief in witchcraft and black magic remains firm among Fang. Unfortunately secret society as Ngil disappeared together with old customs and dances.

The Ngil masks were worn by members of a male society during the initiation of young boys. The mask was a part of raffia costume covered whole body. The Ngil masquerade took place in village after sunset. The masks were mostly painted white to be visible by all spectators.
Today the Ngils are very desired by collectors and original pieces are expensive.

During Vérité auction in Paris in 2006 a 100 years old Ngil mask was sold for $ 6.500.000. The mask with the scarifications on cheeks is a perfect example of spiritual power in African tribal art. Unknown Fang sculptor from rain forest influences and intrigues us in 21th century.

You can admire the beauty and charm of African mastepieces watching the collection of Marcello Lattari.

The collection shows a wide spectrum of tribal art from West and Central Africa including Fang's Ngil masks and Byeri statues.


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