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Tribal art > African mask > Ijo Mask
Ijo animal crest mask (N° 19282)
Timmerman African tribal art collection.
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Rare Ijo mask featuring a porcupine. On either side of the animal's body, bristling with spiked sticks of quills, are rims pierced with holes to which the raffia ornament was attached. Base eroded.
The Ijo of the Niger Delta live mainly from fishing and agriculture, and their small villages are located in swampy areas west of the Nun River, so their cosmogony has naturally centered around this environment. References to their warrior past also abound in reliquaries, rituals and masked celebrations.
Their masks and other artistic productions are intended to honor the aquatic spirits, which they venerate and to whom sacrifices were made. The fishermen had to be careful not to offend these spirits, otherwise the latter could kill their wrath by means of the various dangerous animal species of the region, such as hippopotamuses, crocodiles or pythons. The Ijo believe that spirits and humans come from the same place called Wonyinghibou "our Mother the Forest", and that they return there after death to await a new life. Only women give birth: the Ijo therefore consider that the creator, Wonyinghi, is feminine. They also consider that all their masks, zoomorphic or anthropomorphic, Owumo , are water spirits. ("The Other Face", ed.A.Biro and "Arts of Nigeria" ed.5Continents).
Possibility of payment in3x (3x 216.7 €)
This item is sold with its certificate of authenticity
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