African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Dan mask
Dan mask (N° 20143)
The African dan masks named zapkei ge , whose eyes are blindfolded with red cloth, are responsible for preventing fires by watching over domestic fires. They are worn accessorized with caps, braids, textile cape and raffia, the most prestigious of them being the go ge , royal mask reserved for exceptional events.
This example is embellished with a braided cap extended with long braids made of vegetable fibers. The thin face, with a black patina, is highlighted by the red headband with a yellow band. The eyes have metal rings. Smooth patina.
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For the Dan, or Yacouba, living in the west of the Ivory Coast and in Liberia, the "dü" force that animates the world manifests itself in the sculpted masks. It is in this way that it seeks to bring knowledge to man in order to give him support, and uses the channel of dreams beforehand. The spirits then indicate how to name the mask they wish to see made. These masks of different types are endowed with functions, social, spiritual and political, often evolving with time.
Litt. African masks from the Barbier Mueller collection" ed. Adam Biro
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|Material(s)||wood, plant fibre, metal, textile|
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