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Mumuye Yoke Shoulder Mask Africa Miniature

Regular Price: $99.00

Special Price: $59.00

Product #: 105190
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Title Mumuye Yoke Shoulder Mask Africa Miniature
Type of Object Carved sculpture
Country of Origin Nigeria
People Mumuye
Materials Wood, reeds/raffia
Approximate Age 20th Century 
Dimensions Height: 11.5 Inches
Width: 5.25 Inches
Overall Condition Good
Damage/Repair cracks in the crest with indigenous repair, age cracks in places

Additional Information: This stylized miniature shoulder or head mask comes from a relatively small group known as the Mumuye in the north of Nigeria. Mumuye masks are some of the most highly stylized found in West Africa with a ‘clothes-pin’ shaped body with an opening in the front to allow the dancer to see. The Mumuye live along the eastern bank of the Benue River in Northern Nigeria in an area of mixed art and influences.

The Mumuye for a number of wide ranging purposes uses highly abstracted figures called Lagalagana or masks called Sukwava. In the past they were used to manipulate the forces of nature and control human behavior and lately appear during ceremonies to bring rain. This abstracted body is surmounted by an elongated neck ending in a relatively small crested head with large ears. Masks such as this represent females with a high crested hairstyle wearing large wooden plugs placed into the lobes of the ears. 

Recommended Reading: Sieber, Roy. Sculpture of Northern Nigeria, 1961.