African art > Mask > Gouro Mask
Gouro Zamblé Mask (N° 18256)
Among the group of Mande in the south, in the center of Côte d'Ivoire, on the banks of the Bandama, the Gouro are organized in lineages, and constitute the western neighbors of the Baoulé who have borrowed several characteristics of their creations of African tribal art. Animists, they have been using a family of masks associated with the dy zaouli. Indeed, like the African Masks Goli des Baoulé, all Guro masks, related to the geniuses of nature, come in two zoomorphic masks followed by a third anthropomorph, who is considered the wife of the mask zamblé , the Gu. These masks are the property of families worshipping lineage ancestors, who make ritual and sacrificial use of them in order to attract divine blessings. Priest and soothsayer share the predominant ritual functions among the Guro. The secret associations worship the geniuses of nature, through the masks in which spirits are supposed to reside. Their protective spirits called zuzu were revered by statues placed on altars. The masks gu, gye and dye, in the hands of notables, are only displayed during major funerals or the induction of a chief (Kerchache)The masks of the Gyé society, or Dyé, could not be seen. This sacred African mask, featuring a whimsical combination of leopard and antelope, is the Zamblé , male mythical hero. Stretched and curved, its surface is lashed with vivid contrasting motifs. Surface polished, abraded.
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