Tribal art > African mask > Yoruba Mask
Masque Epa Ekiti Yoruba (N° 19266)
The Ekiti of the eastern part of the yoruba region use polychrome heaume masks illustrating the prosperity of the community. Our copy is surmounted by a male figure leaning on sceptres carved with human motifs. These subjects are associated with the various gods of the Yoruba pantheon. These masks, which are painted by their owners, are released every two years. Despite the weight of the masks, the dancers perform spectacular acrobatic demonstrations. These ceremonies are also supposed to increase fertility. Crusty polychrome patina.
The Yoruba, more than 20 million, occupy the southwestern part of Nigeria and the central and southeastern part of Benin under the name of Nago. They are patrilineal and practice excision and circumcision. The kingdoms of Oyo and Ijebu were born following the disappearance of the Ife civilization and are still at the base of the political structure of the Yoruba. The Oyo created two cults centered on the still active societies Egungun and Sango that worship a pantheon of gods, the Orisa, through ceremonies using masks, statuettes, scepters and divination supports. The slave trade contributed to the dissemination of beliefs Yoruba across the continents.
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