Identification Passport Mask


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Basic Information

Artifact Identification Identification Passport Mask   (1971.13.0045)
  1. Communication Artifacts
  2. :
  3. Documentary Artifacts
  4. :
  5. Other Documents
Artist/Maker None
Geographic Location
Period/Date Nationalist, 20th century
Culture Dan

Physical Analysis

Dimension 1 (Length) 5.2 cm
Dimension 2 (Width) 3.5 cm
Dimension 3 (Depth) 2.4 cm
Weight 6 g
Measuring Remarks None
Materials Plant--Wood, Pigment--Oil
Manufacturing Processes Carved, Rubbing
Munsell Color Information Dark Brown (7.5 Y R 2/2) -ns

Research Remarks

Published Description

INCARNATION OF THE SPIRIT: According to the religion of the Dan, an essential force, called du, animates the world and is present in all things seen and unseen. This force can be made tangible through the creation of a mask animated by a particular spirit. The mask spirits, or mask Du, live in a mountain kingdom where no human has penetrated. They instruct and aid humans, making their wishes known through dreams. Different types of masks include the "fire watch" masquerade, the entertainment masquerade, and the judgement masquerade. (3,4,5,6,7) The Dan also made miniature copies of their masks. Miniatures play a role in initiation. They also may be carried on long journeys by the owner of a mask, as a portable connection to the mask spirit. 71.13.8,9,45,46,47.

Description N/A
Comparanda N/A

Fischer, Eberhard, and Hans Himmelheber. The Arts of the Dan in West Africa. Bern: Stampfli & Cie. trans. Anne Buddle.

Artifact History

Archaeological Data N/A
Credit Line/Dedication Purchase
Reproduction no
Reproduction Information N/A

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