Lot 27
  • 27

A FINE DOGON MONKEY MASK

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Description

deeply carved from dense wood, pierced around the rim for attachment, the angular snout beneath the medial ridge framed by pierced triangular eyes and the domed, overhanging brow incised with zigzag motifs and framed by C-shaped ears; aged, greyish brown patina.

Catalogue Note


CATALOGUE NOTE

The Dogon 'monkey' mask is just one of a number of Dogon masks representing animals. See Musée Dapper (1995: 166-7) for two closely related masks and Bilot, Calame-Griaule and Ndiaye (2001:88-95) for a series of monkey masks. The range of carving style of the black monkey mask is vast, explained perhaps in part by the diverse geographic origin but more importantly by the capacity for invention of the Dogon sculptors themselves. In addition, one should note the great variation in the surface patina of the monkey masks, a clear sign both of their use and of their age (ibid.). The offered lot bears an extremely worn and eroded surface, a testment to its age.

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