This mask manifests the creator deity Afwi, and is a consort to the fiercest of the masks, Landai. This mask must have been an awesome sight for the young initiates when it emerged from the forest brandishing a weapon. The mask symbolically devours the young boys at the beginning of their training in the Poro initiation school, and leaves the marks of his teeth on their bodies (in the form of scarification).
Usually surmounted by symmetrical horns, this mask we have is unusual, in that it has a female coiffure carved at the top of the mask ( such as those displayed at the Musee de l'Homme in Paris, and the Metropolitan Musem of Art in New York, where it replaces the horns).
Collected in 1963 in the Guinea/Liberia hinterland. Verbally authenticated to Scott Rodolitz by William Siegmann as well as Irwin Hersey and Dr. Leon Siroto.
Ex. Graven Images Ltd., New York and Ex. Christopher and Genevieve McConnell collection.
Height: 21 ¼”
Width: 10 ⅞”
Depth: 6 ½”
Stand not included.