One of the only horizontal mask danced in Africa.
Butterfly masks are worn at dances during a spring festival to encourage the fertility of the fields. The spiritual life of the Bwa is based on worship devoted to their god "Do" and the founding ancestors of the clans. Do intervenes at the time of agrarian rituals & funerals.
Turning from side to side while moving forward as though in flight, the butterfly mask gives a spectacular performance. It whirls in clouds of dust, dancing on the parched earth to call for rain.
The butterfly motif is a reminder that they appear in great numbers after the first rains.
This can be hung on the wall or suspended from the ceiling or beam so that both the front and back can be viewed.
94 ½" (7' 10 ½") in length x 13 ¼" in height with a depth of 9".To watch similar masks being danced, click on the video below;