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    Description

    BAMANA MASK
    (MALI, WESTERN AFRICA)

    The men's Ntomo initiation society separates prepubescent boys from their families and isolates them in a camp where they are prepared for circumcision and adulthood. During their training, some boys wear horned Ntomo masks like the present example. The horns always seen on Ntomo masks vary in number but are always present. They symbolize important principles of Bamana adult life, while the female figure reminds the boys in the initiation camp of the precepts of training they have received that relate to women.

    There are several carving styles to be seen in Bamana Ntomo masks. The present mask is stylistically close to that of Bamana carvings from the area around the town of Segou. It exhibits post-field polish and has an old collection number in white pigment on the proper left edge of the mask back. There are traces of a decorative botanical resin in spots to be seen on some of the horns. A break in the outside horn on the proper left has been neatly repaired with metal staples on both front and back. More metal staples are to be seen on the female figure, where they repair breaks to the lower torso and both legs. Extensive insect damage is to be seen in holes on the proper right cheek and to the center of the face, especially on the back of the mask. A break caused by insects under the nose to the mouth and chin is covered with a neatly applied metal plate secured with staples.

    Height: 20 ½ inches


    Estimate: $2,000 - $4,000.

    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.

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2015
    15th Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 332

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