African art > Mask > Baoulé Mask
Baule Ndoma Mask (N° 14888)
Another variant of the African mask Baoulé called mask-portrait, this copy wears a janiform crest and presents, in the center of the eyebrow arch in the heart marked with the sign ngole , a delicately drawn nose, a narrow mouth in advance. Relief patterns are inscribed on the forehead, in relation to the scarifications. A thin crenellated necklace evokes a beard, and therefore a hermaphrodite character. This piece of African tribal art features a carmy red patina on which brown drippings remain. Residual ochre inlays in the hollows. Crack.
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These portrait masks of the Baoulé, ndoma , which are part of one of the oldest baoulé artistic traditions and frequently represent an idealized character, have the peculiarity of manifesting themselves at the end of the ceremonies of entertainment dances. The latter are named, depending on the regions, bedwo, ngblo, mblo, adjussu, etc. Each of these masks are distinguished by the hairstyles, the location and the choice of scarifications, etc. Also called Gbagba , they personify graceful young girls or men whose valour or integrity qualities are reputed. The new generations are gradually replacing these dances Mblo called Gbagba in some villages, retaining most of the old conventions, with the dance Kpan Kpan , whose masks raise societal problems or refer to political projects.
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