A very large, impressive village protector mask that displays very well on a stand or on the wall. Carved from one piece of wood and measures about 27" overall. Cracks and wear as per photos. One large old stable crack/splinter runs along the bottom of jaw. Overall great patina. This mask has great provenance and great presence. Mid 20th century and one of the last generation of masks that were actually used.
The braided copper wire shown in the photos is to mount the mask on a wall.
Provenance: From the Collection of Ambassador Patricia and Mr. Richard Hawkins. Ambassador Hawkins is currently the U.S. Ambassador to Togo. She has previously served the State Department in Zaire, now Democratic Republic of the Congo; Burkina Faso; and Cote D'Ivoire. Richard Hawkins is also a career Foreign Service Diplomat. Both of them have connoisseur's eyes. The Hawkins' have collected African art for many years, and we are delighted to offer a portion of their magnificent collection.
This mask was purchased from the company "Africa Direct" (a Colorado based African art dealer, who purchased Ambassador Hawkin's collection in its entirety. The original Africa Direct site listing with photos of the mask, detailed description, invoice number and price accompanies the mask. It was listed at $950. 4 years ago and wrongly described as a Senufo firespitter mask.
This mask is known as "bonu amwin". It represents a buffalo, symbol of force contained. Surmounted by a large pair of horns, a broad rectangular mouth shows the teeth. The teeth symbolize the force of the animal which must defend it
It was used for protecting the villages from the bad fates and from insufficient harvests when the village men left for war. Country North-Baoule. This mask displays a Senufo influence..
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