The Chokwe people (or Tschokwe) come from Central and South Africa; they’re particularly present in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in Angola and to a lesser extent in Zambia and Namibia. The artists of this ethnic group are masterful wood carvers, able to mold statues, masks, tools for hunting or for fertility rites. Many sculptures are dedicated to the reigning prince. In Chokwe representations, there is always the saltire (Saint Andrew’s cross).
Dance Chokwe mask
The peculiarities of this work clearly outline its ethnicity. The sign on the front is the cross of St. Andrew; this symbol is an inevitable decoration of Chokwe works. Another typical factor is the mouth depicted with a row of pronounced teeth. The hairstyle in natural fibers is topped by a hat, forming a characteristic and at the same time fascinating set.