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Yaure Mask with Serrated Beard Cote D'Ivoire African Art

Regular Price: $350.00

Special Price: $190.00

Product #: 100393
US Shipping: $24.98
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Title Yaure Mask with Serrated Beard Cote D'Ivoire Africa
Type of Object Face mask
Country of Origin Cote D'Ivoire
People Yaure
Materials Wood, white pigment
Approximate Age 20th century
Dimensions 14 inches tall x 8.25 inchs wide x 3.5 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 Chips, cracks and general wear

Additional Information: This mask has a much elaborated coiffure typical of the Baule and Yaure. The facial features of masks from these two groups are remarkably similar: crescent eyes, pursed lips and heart-shaped face.  But this example is more likely from the Yaure because of its  beard with serrated edges surrounding the lower border of the face.

The Yaure are a smallish Akan culture, closely related to the Baule and Guro. Their masks, like the one offered here, are similar in style to those of both groups, but usually have a few defining elements to aid in their identification. The Yaure used two types of masks, those that were black and those that were brightly painted. The darker ones were used in funeral processions, and are highly-prized by collectors for their stark beauty. Known as "lo" masks, their purpose was to appease supernatural powers known as "yu." The "yu," though vital for life, could also destroy, so veneration was important to ease the understandable social and spiritual tension present after the death of an elder. Masks could not be seen by women, and were treated with caution even by the men who danced them. The ritual significance of masks in the Ivory Coast has been diminished by Western influence and civil unrest, but are still used for special occasions.

Recommended Reading:

S. M. Vogel: Beauty in the Eyes of the Baule: Aesthetics and Cultural Values, Institute for the Study of Human Issues, Working Paper 6
(Philadelphia, 1980)

S. M. Vogel, Baule, African Art, Western Eyes. 1997