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Guro Mask Brown Face Ivory Coast African Art

Regular Price: $150.00

Special Price: $65.00

Product #: 100428
US Shipping: $24.98
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Title Guro Mask Brown Face Ivory Coast Africa
Type of Object Mask
Country of Origin Cote d'Ivoire
People Guro
Materials Wood, paint
Approximate Age Second half 20th century
Dimensions 23 inches H. x 6.5 inches W. 3 inches Deep.
Overall Condition Good. Most of our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners.   Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use.  We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings.  Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.
Damage/Repair General wear, cracks and chips


Additional Information:


The Guro of the Ivory Coast (Cote D'Ivoire) are related to the Baule, and there is a resemblance in their masks. The daily life of the Guro is dominated by secret societies called "zuzu". Guro masks are elegant, usually long with pointed chins, and generally the most colorful of African masks. Sometimes there are burn marks on them. They are often repainted, so layers of paint are not uncommon.   Such masks were danced in various ceremonies. They belong to the category of Je masks and are the first to appear to warm up the audience prior to the appearance of the anthropomorphic masks, considered to be the most important during the performance.Guro masks remain extremely popular with collectors.


The Guro have lived in the western Cote D'Ivoire for generations, having arrived from the north perhaps 700 years ago. They are from Mande stock, unlike their Akan neighbors. The Guro were originally known as the "Kweni," but during the brutal colonization by the French between 1906 and 1912 they were assigned the Baule name "Guro." They exist primarily by farming cocoa, coffee and cotton, although more recently many Guro men and women have fled their traditional villages to join in the hunt for diamonds, which have recently been discovered up and down the west coast of Africa, including Cote d'Ivoire. These diamond fields operate in virtual anarchy, and resemble in some ways the Gold Rush of the 1840's in the United States. While a few might make a living, or perhaps strike it rich, the majority end up either broke or exploited, so many of the miners eventually give up and return to their villages.