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c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask
  • c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask

c1960 Africa Ivory Coast Guere War or Judgement Mask

Price:

£1,550.00


Product Description

A very nice original African Ivory Coast Guere Ceremonial War Mask.


The mask, which dates from no later than the 1950s to 1960, when it was acquired, is carved out of wood and is quite daunting in appearance, probably worn for a war ceremony of for delivering judgement decisions. Before the 1960s, the making of the masks was inspired by the visit of spirits in dreams, and covered such activities as war, dancing, singing, hunting, etc. Each mask was named dependent on the activity it represented.

Guere or neighbouring Wobe masks are distinctive because of their abstract look. The forehead hangs over the face, which has fake globular oval eyes with horizontal slits. Above it and below are 2 pairs of horns, pointing up and down. The eyelets are above the mock eyes. However, there are 2 sets of eyelets, one as slits, the other round. This may be the result of improving vision, or the fact that 2 different people have worn it. The mask is surrounded by a bushy black moustache and beard of what looks like human hair. The mouth has imbedded broken animal teeth. The top of the forehead is decorated with cowrie shells. Above this is a horn pouch strapped on to the mask. The beard below the mouth has 2 steel and 1 brass bell. The reverse shows less evidence of wear and age, as it has a cloth head cover made of old towelling. Condition is very good, taking into account its age, with fine patina. Apart from a light brush, the mask has been not been cleaned or polished. It is part of a collection aquired by a French Diplomat based in Africa and purchased from his retirement home in Brittany, France.

This is probably a war mask from the Guere or Wobe people. They are an ethnic group from a forested region along the border of the Ivory Coast and Liberia. They are a part of a larger people named the We, and all of them share many beliefs and customs as well as similar art.

Size: 38 x 22 x 14 cm (15 x 8 5/8 x 5 ½ inches)
Weight: 1773 g

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