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Face Mask

13 3/8 x 4 7/8 in. (34 x 12.4 cm)

Unknown, Dyimini
Ivoirian

Object Type: Sculpture
Medium and Support: Wood, pigment
Credit Line: Marion Stratton Gould Fund
Accession Number: 1970.21
Location: Currently on view
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Dyimini masquerade functions within Poro, the men’s secret association that provides the traditional educational, religious, and social training for young men. Masks used in Poro are restricted to men; for the most part, women are forbidden to see and use these carvings and to learn the secrets of this powerful society. The mask’s linear scarification patterns and elaborate hairstyle are expressions of traditional Dyimini ideals of beauty. The raised serrated edge that frames the face depicts a stylized beard, a symbol of wisdom and authority achieved with age and experience.
[Gallery label text, 2009]

Provenance
Afrantique Arts, Wyckoff, NJ; purchased from them by the Gallery in 1970

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