This mask, of an unusual type, is attributable to Malinke, neighbors
of Bamana and which adopted the n'tomo society initiation
rites. Multi-horned headpieces are specific to the n'tomo
associations, but one of the particularities of this mask is that the
horns are fitted into a large oval.
Used within the framework of initiatory rituals, and in agricultural
ceremonies, it enclosed the spiritual and protective strength of the
lineage. At the time of these ceremonies, the mask, then inert and
secular, became the attribute of a dressed up dancer which gave it
life and word. Because this is only through the movement, and through
the dancer more particularly, that the mask finds its effectiveness.
This mask is exceptional both because of its vigorous and compact
execution and its perfect symmetry.
Probably 19th century.
If you want to know more about this object or send us your remarks,
click here. Please notify us with this object id: 2549.