Bakuba Royal Bwoom Mask | A Tale of Power and Desire 90 x 35 cm




From the heart of Congo comes a mask, not just of intricate artistry but one imbued with legends of ambition, desire, and royal feuds. This vintage Bakuba Royal Bwoom mask encapsulates the spirit of Mboma, the ambitious brother of Mwaash, the revered Kuba King.

Crafted with meticulous attention to detail, this helmet mask is a marvel of African craftsmanship. Embellished with copper, metal, intricate beading, luscious cowrie shells, authentic animal hair, and distinctive geometric patterns, it reflects the unique artistry of the Congo region. But it’s not just the materials that make this mask special; it’s the story it tells.

Mboma, a symbol of raw ambition and fierce tenacity, yearned to wrest power from his brother, Mwaash Mukenge, the King of Kuba. He desired not just the throne but also the heart of the Queen, who intriguingly was the wife as well as the sister of the King. This mask vividly captures Mboma’s fervor and his relentless drive to claim what he believed was rightfully his.

Diving deeper into the legends of the Kuba Kingdom, Mwaash, or Woot, holds a significant place. Revered as the first Kuba King, it is believed that the entire Kuba lineage descended from him. He married his own sister, a woman of great allure and stature, representing both a queen and a sister. This marriage sets the backdrop for the intense rivalry between the two brothers.

The Mboma mask is not merely a relic of the past; it’s a living testament to Kuba history, as it plays an integral role in ceremonial dances that revere and recount the origins of the Kuba Kingdom. This mask is a vital component of the royal mask triad, which includes the figures of the King, the Queen (Ngadia Mwash), and the King’s brother, Mboma or Bwoom.

To possess this mask is to hold a chapter of the Kuba’s legendary past, bringing with it tales of power struggles, royal feuds, and unyielding ambition.




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