Skip to Main Content »

You're currently on:

Search Site
Click on image above to zoom.

Dan Mask Deangle Cote d'Ivoire Liberia African Art

Product #: 90787
US Shipping: $20.98
Add Items to Cart

Title Dan Face Mask Deangle Cote d'Ivoire Liberia African
Type of Object Mask
Country of Origin Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia
People Dan
Materials wood, vegetal fibers,   encrustation, pigment
Approximate Age second half 20th century
Dimensions 12 inches x 7.5 inches W.
Overall Condition Good
Damage/Repair General wear, traces of encrustation

Additional Information:

A small face mask  with the remain of  encrusted material and  vegetal fiber braid.   The elengant face in a lozenge form has a serene expression highlights by the encrusted patina. The facial features include the open eye i, protruding eyebrows, very fine nose and mouth. It depicts a female character.  This mask comes from the Dan people of Liberia and depicts a female character.

. Famous for their masks, the Dan believe that spirits, known as "Du," live in the forests and manifest themselves to humans in masks and masquerades, instructing and sustaining the Dan in life. When during a dream a male was instructed by Du to dance a mask, he would commission a carver to make a mask for him. Among the Dan, masks are grouped in an assortment of forms with different duties assigned to each. This mask belongs to the category of  Deangle or Tangle. Thought to portray a female, it dances in a style thought to be feminine, with gliding steps and graceful movements. Deangle dances for all to see as "she" entertains and instructs the village in peaceful pursuits. Each Deangle mask reflects the skill of the artist and taste of the patron, and while local variations occur, there are long established criteria for Deangle that reflect a continuum in Dan cultural aesthetics and styles.  

Recommended Reading: G. Schwab: "Tribes of the Liberian Hinterland," ed. G. W. Harley, Papers Peabody Museum, Archaeology & Ethnology, xxxi (Cambridge, MA, 1947) W. Siegmann and Cynthia Schmidt, "Rock of the Ancestors," (Suacoco, 1977) E. Fischer and Hans Himmelhaber: "The Arts of the Dan in West Africa," (Zurich, 1984) E. Fischer “Dan Forest Spirits: Masks in Dan Villages”, African Arts, II, no. 2, 1978. pp. 16-23, 94 B. C. Johnson: "Four Dan Sculptors: Continuity and Change," (San Francisco, 1986)