Tyi Wara crest masks (Profile view)
Female viewMaps

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Item : Tyi Wara crest masks, Picture : Profile view (approx. 17 Kbytes)

The tyi wara headdress, set on top of the head using a wicker basket, was the attribute of its initiation society whose fundamental principles are to harmonize the community life, the fertility of the cultures and the place of the Man within cosmos. 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.

The tyi wara were worn for ceremonies celebrating agricultural life, and usually, they were dancing in couple. Representing stylized antelopes, male and female, these headdresses are decorated with ridges and chevron-shaped drawings, the horns are finely twisted, and the eyes are inlaid with glass. Symbol of fecundity, the tyi wara express the art to make a ground fertile ; symbol of the mankind origins, they also express the creation of the universe by analogy of the symbols and the myths.
Probably 19th century.

Female size (inches) : 26 x 16 ; male size (inches) : 28. 7 x 17

Object #2297

Origin :

Mali (Kayes area)

Type :

Masks and headdresses

Ethnic group :

Bamana (Bambara)

Material :

Wood, aged patina, fabric, cowries, natural pigments, basket work

Size :

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