African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Bidjogo Mask

Bidjogo Mask (N° 22700)

Mask provided with real horns, coming from the Bidjogo, established in the Bissagos archipelago composed of about thirty islands located off Guinea-Bissau. Upholstery nails, metal slats and red fabric adorn this mask depicting a cow's head. The muzzle wears a ring. Desication cracks.

The mask is worn before or at the end of initiation ceremonies, by a young "cabaro" initiate, who will bow and rear, conveying the idea of ​​a vigorous but still untamed young animal, and the need to go through the initiatory process in order to acquire discipline and mastery. This type of mask appears nowadays for entertainment parties and on the occasion of the passage of distinguished visitors. These masks, named vaca bruto in Portuguese Creole, were displayed on the prows of warlords' boats. It was indeed Portuguese sailors who introduced the animal to the archipelago in the 15th century. Other zoomorphic masks are produced, some related to aquatic fauna, and statues embodying divinities, with triangular faces, named iran which have an apotropaic function and are placed under cover in shrines.

Sources: "Animal masks of black Africa" ​​ed. Sepia; "African Masks" ed. Adam Biro.  

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OriginEx-collection française.
EthnyBidjogo
CountryGuinée
Material(s)wood, metal, textile
Height cm18
Depth34 cm
Width37 cm
Weight1.32 Kg
Estimated dating2ème halfxx°
Socle inclusOptional

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