Cette œuvre s’affirme par l’ampleur démesurée du bec articulé conférant au masque toute son envergure. Lui répond la délicate collerette surplombant le regard et structurant l’œuvre en plans géométriques anguleux qui contrastent avec le modelé arrondi du bec. S’ajoute enfin la délicate patine noire brillante, rehaussée à certains endroits de kaolin, témoin de l’archaïsme de ce masque.
Within the corpus of masks from Côte d’Ivoire there exists a great variety of hybrid pieces, associating anthropomorphic traits with zoomorphic characteristics. That is the case, for instance, for Dan masks with a large beak: "The latter is often depicted as the bill of a hornbill, because this bird matters to the population a great deal [...] The hornbill, known for bringing back the first oil palm nut, thus obtained its mythical status and is credited with introducing its culture [...] a way to show that the mask, and, by extension, the spirit that it embodies, belong to the world of men but are an embodiment of the privileged ties that they have with nature" (Falgayrettes-Leveau et alii, Animal, 2007, p. 140).
This piece stands out for the outsize scale of the articulated bill, giving the mask its full scope. It is offset by the delicate collar overhanging the eyes and structuring the piece into angular geometric planes that contrast with the rounded outlines of the bill. Finally, the delicate, glossy black patina, enhanced in certain places with kaolin, attests to the archaism of this mask.
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