A Dan mask, Ivory Coast, called ‘Gegon’, of oval hollowed form, a long, large beak carved out from the same piece, narrow slitted eyes, bordered all around, an angular sloping forehead, at the top of the head sits a bent nail as a fetish material, pierced through at the rim for attachment; reddish patina, remnants of encrusted scarifications on the top, traces of age, ritual use, cracks, incl. stand.
Masked dancers who perform with masks such as the present one wear a full-body costume made of fabric and plant fibers, as well as a helmet-like crest embellished with a décor of cowries and feathers on their head. The mask figure is known as ‘Gegon’ dances for entertainment in the villages of the northern Dan or plays the role of a guardian in the initiation camps in the ‘bush’.
Lit.: Eberhard Fischer/Hans Himmelheber: The Arts of the Dan in West Africa, Museum Rietberg, 1984; Hans Himmelheber: Masken der We und Dan – Elfenbeinküste, Museum Rietberg, Zürich, 1997.
700 – 800,- Euro
Height: 35 cm
Weight: 770 g