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Bobo Fing Nyanga Mask (N° 19873)
Anthropo-zoomorphic mask surmounted by rounded horns in arch. Abraded matte polychromy. Desiccation cracks.
A Mandingo people, most of whom live in eastern Burkina Faso, but also in southern Mali, the culture of the Bobo Fing is similar to that of the Bambara . They are organized into lineages led by councils of elders. In each village altars are erected under the authority of blacksmiths , priests of the Dwo cult, but the Bobo also worship secondary spirits and those of ancestors. In addition to objects carved from wood, they also make masks from fiber sheets to wear during ceremonies in order to establish a relationship with the spiritual world. The most important of the wooden masks are the sacred altar masks ( molo and nwenke ), the accompanying masks ( nyanga ), and those for entertainment ( Bole , sing. bolo).
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Before the rainy season, in order to restore the balance of nature, masked dancers embodying the genies protecting the village appear in purification ceremonies. Leaf masks embodying Dwo perform along with zoomorphic masks, the nyanga, evoking growth and fertility.
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