African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Ogoni Mask
Ogoni Face Mask (N° 14603)
The Ogoni live along the coast of Nigeria, near the mouth of the Cross-River, south of the Igbo and west of the Ibibio. Their sculptures vary from village to village, but are mainly renowned for their articulated macho masks such as some Ekpo Ibibio masks. Their masks were usually worn at funerals, festivities accompanying plantations and crops, but also more recently to welcome distinguished guests. The acrobatic events related to the celebration karikpo, and accompanied by the kere karikpo drum, were also an opportunity to exhibit various zoomorphic masks. This mask, which embodies a high-ranking ancestor or character, has a beak-shaped mouth, and has a stylized figure on the head reminiscent of a bird with outstretched wings. The rather thin nose is pierced with nostrils, the earlobes also perforated, and the eyes incised into almonds. The jaw is maintained through wicker ties. The surface has a chipped patina, in mahogany brown tones, and residual inlays of white pigments.
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