Tribal art > African mask > Masque Grebo
Masque facial Kru / Grebo polychrome (N° 14885)
African art and the fantastic masks of Liberia
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The tubular growths of golden metal indicating eyes would refer here to the expression often quoted in West Africa "four eyes", describing a person endowed with a power of divination. This sculpture features a summit panel, curved forward, the elements of which form a stylized face. The central mask is surrounded by small horns or teeth, with "talismans" pointing from clay clumps, contrasting with the indigo of the eye. Similarities with the bété war masks are notable. Tailings of kaolin, red ochre and orange soil form a beautiful patina locally abraded.
Lack at the inner bottom contour.
The Kru are divided into twenty-four subgroups, including the Grebo, based in southern Liberia and southwestern Côte d'Ivoire. Their leader and priest is the bodio, who lives reclusively. Unlike most people in West Africa, they are not subject to Poro society. Their masks with tubular growths are said to be of origin oubi , and could symbolize the mythical creatures that populate the forests of the shores of the Cavally, to which the people address through ritual ceremonies. The interest of Cubist painters and modern sculptors in the abstract forms of the Grebo mask could be seen in some of their works, such as Picasso's metal guitar in 1914.
source: ", Ivory Coast Treasures. F.Neyt"
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|Material(s)||wood, metal, plant fibre, argile|
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