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    Description

    (1)Dan (Kpelle) (Liberia) (2)Bassa (Liberia/Ivory Coast)
    Miniature Mask
    Wood
    (1)Height: 6 ½ in. Width: 3 in. Dia.: 1 5/8 in.
    (2)Height: 7 1/8 in. Width: 3 3/8 in. Dia.: 2 ¾ in.

    Miniature masks come in a range of sizes from under two inches to seven or eight inches in height. Thus, these two examples are at the upper end of the size range. Generically these small masks are known as ma go, "small head". Another expression used in connection with them is yi luo po, 'thing which water is poured over'. This name seems to refer to sacrifices made to the object, as the act of making a small offering is described as 'giving cool water'" (Eberhard Fischer and Hans Himmelheber. The Art of the Dan in West Africa. Zürich: Rietberg Museum, 1984, p. 107).
    The small masks are used in a daunting variety of ways, a number of which include the process of using them to draw off into themselves a portion of a full-sized mask's power so that power may be more portable and also be put to a wide range of uses both personal and organizational.
    The range of style variations among the related tribes in the Dan area of Liberia and Ivory Coast may be seen in the contrast between these two examples. Both are exceptional in quality of concept and carving. The Dan mask has a chip out of the inside edge at the proper left top; otherwise, its condition is very good, as is the Bassa mask throughout.

    Provenance: H. Bruce Greene II and family, Naples, Florida



    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2007
    7th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 933

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

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