Leonard Kahan, New York
Marc Ginzberg, New York
Alan Steele, New York
Cf. Laude (1973:89) for a related example of an early 18th century mask collected by Griaule in 1931. These ancient weathered masks, often of enormous height, are referred to as the 'Great Mask' or 'Mother of Masks' (ibid.). As Griaule notes, the distinguishing features of this mask are its great size, spare carving of the head, the length of the pillar and the sheer weight of the mask. These elements precluded a participant from wearing the mask (Ndiaye 1995:55). It is believed that these large-scale masks were carved specifically for the Sigui festival which occurred every sixty years, after which they were stored in stone shelters with their forebearers and other important masks (Laude 1973:89). The weathered patinas and often fragmentary condition attests to their years of storage. See Ndiaye (1995:55, figure 33) for another closely related mask acquired during Griaule's third mission to Mali in 1935, attributed to the Sanga region, in the Colléction Museé de l'Homme, Paris.
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