African art > African mask, tribal art, primitive art > Dan mask
Dan Gunye ge mask - Ivory Coast (N° 20365)
An actor of the social order, the African art mask Dan would be, according to Eberhard Fisher, of the feminine or masculine type. Corresponding to the main criteria of female masks gle mu, with an oval and regular face, a fine nose and a protruding and pulpy mouth, this specimen is however accompanied by a goatee of vegetable fibers. Masks equipped with round orbits ( gunye ge ), facilitating vision, are part of the Northern Dan mask set and are used for racing events during the dry season. As for the zapkei ge , also with circular orbits, they 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.
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For the Dan, or Yacouba, living in western Côte d'Ivoire and Liberia, the "dü" force that would animate the world would manifest itself in the sculpted masks. It is in this way that it seeks to bring knowledge to man in order to give him support, using 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 social, spiritual and political functions, often evolving with time.
ref. Art of Sub-Saharan Africa" C. Mullen Kreamer
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|Material(s)||wood, raphia, textile, alumidnum|
|Estimated dating||2ème halfxx°|
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