Baule Mbra Monkey Mask

5699

$9,500.00

In stock

In stock

Baule

ITEM #:
5699
ETHNICITY:
Baule
ORIGIN:
Cote D’Ivoire
BAULE MBRA MONKEY MASK:
This Baule Mbra Monkey Mask is more popularly known as Gbekre, from the Baule people of Cote d’Ivoire.

Details


African Art

ITEM #:
5699
ETHNICITY:
Baule
ORIGIN:
Cote D’Ivoire
MEDIUM:
Wood, pigment, animal hide, patina of age.
DIMENSIONS:
10.3 inches tall (26.2 cm)
CONDITION:
Very Good.
CIRCA:
Early to Mid 20th Century.


African Art

PROVENANCE:
Jean-Pierre Hallet (1927 – 2004) – California, USA.


African Art

CATALOGUE NOTE:
This stunningly life-like monkey mask is a Baule Mbra mask more popularly known as Gbekre, from Cote d’Ivoire. With its rough finish and the sharp metal teeth, the mask exudes undeniable malevolence with its real-life monkey rawhide partially cloaked face. These accents also express his nature as a spirit of the bush, as opposed to the smooth calmness of village spirits sculptures such as spirit lovers (blolo bla or blolo bian) or their highly finished ancestor figures (waka sana). The attachment holes, traces of libations, combined with the evident age, use and weather wear affirm the authenticity of this rare mask.

Its role or function remains uncertain. Some say it intervenes in the ritual of divination, others that it is a protection against sorcerers, or a protective divinity of agrarian rites, or a bush spirit. Owned only by trance diviners and certain families, the mask resides hidden outside under a shelter.

This exceptional Baule Mbra mask comes from the private collection of Jean Pierre Hallet.

 


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