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Baule Monkey Mask Baring Teeth Ivory Coast African Art

Regular Price: $790.00

Special Price: $525.00

Product #: 95950
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Title Baule Monkey Mask Baring Teeth Ivory Coast Africa
Type of Object Mask
Country of Origin Cote d'Ivoire
People Baule
Materials Wood, pigment
Approximate Age Second half 20th century
Dimensions 19 inches tall x 8 inches deep x 9 inches wide
Overall Condition Good
Damage/Repair one large crack with indigenous repair. left ear is chipped. scrapes, scratches

Additional Information: A Baule mask portraying the abstracted face of a primate.  The monkey form is clear, with a rounded and elongated jaw, tall round ears, and large teeth showing.  Carved from a single piece of hard, solid wood, this is an impressive example of Baule carving.  The patina is thick and the mask shows signs of age and use.

Monkey carvings known as Mbra and sometimes referred to as Gbekre are considered as power figure used in many rituals especially during a trance divination where the spirit of Mbra assists the diviner in his effort to transmit the spirits of other world message to the living in order to solve a problem during a consultation.

The Baule have produced animal masks, very often composed of human and zoomorphic elements taken from animals prominent in everyday life . As for many other animal masks this one would dance to honor visiting dignitaries and during funerals honoring senior men and former dancers of masks. Though identified with the sacred forest and the men’s society, Baule animal masks do not appear to have a well defined religious or ritual function. However they serve to protect the village from external danger or war. In any case they are not to be seen by women during their appearance.