• Creator
  • Yoruba (African people) Social life and customs
  • Created Date
  • 7-8-02
  • Description
  • Dark wooden carved helmet mask with long braids of human hair attached with string to holes along the lower edge. A small, diamond-shaped face with almond-shaped eyes is carved in relatively low relief over a stock neck. There are three scarification marks at each temple. Hair is indicated with incised cross-hatched lines and a head-piece indicated by five bulging projections at the top of the head. Bead earrings are attached to the ears. The ... more
    Dark wooden carved helmet mask with long braids of human hair attached with string to holes along the lower edge. A small, diamond-shaped face with almond-shaped eyes is carved in relatively low relief over a stock neck. There are three scarification marks at each temple. Hair is indicated with incised cross-hatched lines and a head-piece indicated by five bulging projections at the top of the head. Bead earrings are attached to the ears. The Sande are one of the few female groups of maskers in Africa. Men carved the masks on commission from middle level Sande Society members. These masks (sowei) are meant to attract and embody personal protective spirits, so they are carved to represent the Mende female ideal of beauty. The surfaces are polished to a shiny black. The elaborate coiffures of intricate braids and banding are naturalistic and the three neck rings represent rolls of fat that symbolize wealth and fecundity. A high forehead indicates wisdom and success. The facial features are meant to suggest calmness and patience. African Folk Tales; African Novel Study. 16 History; 18 Social Systems; 25-27 Fine Arts. less
  • Format
  • Helmetmask.jpg