Collection

“Sun Mask”

Sun Mask

Bwa, Burkina Faso.
Late 20th Century,
Wood, Pigment, 19" x 18".

These masks are said to have been used in the Bwa dance to celebrate the farming season. With its circular design and radiating, triangular pattern of dark brown and white pigments, it clearly expresses the light of the sun. The concentric circles used for the eyes and mouth, as well as the very familiar use of sharp, jagged teeth, are known characteristics of masks created by the Bwa of the Burkina Faso region.

Recent scholars are proposing different views about the originating creators of this particular mask and its style, leaning towards a connecting link to the local Bobo tribe and variations in the region. The idea of one single style, per tribal or cultural assignation, is a theory many scholars no longer ascribe to and seek to move on from. Though descended from a long tradition of masks, this particular style is believed to have been created by a specific village in the late 1980s as a means of production and support for the village. It is believed that this is a recently developed style of mask, which is based off of earlier, more traditional ancestral designs and styles. This piece clearly creates a connection to the future of indigenous contemporary African art and its originating culture and artistic style.

Throwing Club Rangu

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Wood Mask

Wood Mask

Punu, Gabon

Pair of Heddle Pulleys

Pair of Heddle Pulleys

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Face Mask with Braided Headdress

Face Mask w/Braided Headdress

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Paddle Figures

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Sande Helmet Mask

Sande Helmet Mask

Bassa, Liberia

Hornbill with Figures

Hornbill with Figures

Baga, Guinea

Face Mask with Hinged Jaw

Face Mask with Hinged Jaw

Ibo (Igbo), Nigeria

Eket Face Mask

Eket Face Mask

Ibibio, Nigeria

Kifwebe Mask

Kifwebe Mask

Songye, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Baboon Mask

“Baboon” Mask

Bamun-Bali, Cameroon

Face Mask

Face Mask

Fang, Gabon

Sun Mask

Sun Mask

Bwa, Burkina Faso

Large Animal Helmet Mask

Large Animal Helmet Mask

Bobo, Mali