Bundu / Mende Helmet Mask
Sande Society, Sierra Leone

20" x 11"
Inventory # 10298

Mende helmet masks were worn by initiated members of the Sande or Bondo secret societies and embodied the mystical guiding forces of the spirits. They are carved to represent the ideal of feminine beauty: an elaborate hairstyle, full forehead, and delicate facial features. The Sande and Bondo secret societies are unique in African cultures, as they are the only ones in which women both carve and wear the masks.