Dance mask - Metal, Wood - Gu - Baoulé - Côte d'Ivoire

Dance mask - Metal, Wood - Gu - Baoulé - Côte d'Ivoire
Mid 20th century - Good

The Gouros, population of Mandé, come from the North and arrive in this region in the 16th century.

The Baoulé call them Gouro.

Gu or Gou masks are mainly female masks that accompany the Zamble and Zaouli masks.

These masks follow men’s masks during the ceremonies.

They belong to the cult of the Yo and have practically disappeared due to lack of attractiveness, their dance is no longer impressive enough.

Today, when the Gu mask is mentioned, men shrug and say it is a mask of the older generation of dancers.

The Gouro are a Mandingo people of West Africa that includes about forty tribes, established mainly in the centre-west of Ivory Coast, around Bouaflé and Zuénoula, on the banks of the Bandama.

They are surrounded by the Bété in the west, the Gagou in the south, the Baoulé in the east and the Malinké in the north.

The Gouro have strongly influenced their neighbours from an artistic point of view.

They are also called: Dipa, Gouros, Guro, Guros, Gwio, Kouéni, Kouen, Kweni, Kwenis, Kweny, Kwéndré, Lo, Lorube.

The mask shows signs of frequent use, patina of use and small consumed parts (nose and scarifications). In addition, a long crack due to ageing crosses the mask vertically on the side, without altering its interpretation.

One of the wooden teeth was replaced on site with a metal one.

Lot details
Dance mask
Indigenous object name
Ethnic group/ culture
Region/ country
Côte d'Ivoire
Metal, Wood
Mid 20th century
Sold with stand
37×19×20 cm
1510 g
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