17" TALL , 27 " LONG THIS TRADITIONAL MASK IS IN EXCELLENT USED CONDITION.
GOOD PATINA AND AGE CRACKS
HARD HEAVY WOOD
COMPARE @ /BAMANA/BamanaChiWara/BamanaChiWaraAbstract/BamanaChiWaraAbstract.html
ESTIMATED AGE AT 50 + YEARS OLD
Tji Wara (Chi wara) - Tji Waras are "danced" twice a year, for the planting, and again after the harvest to honor the best farmer in the village. Sometimes the figure is above another animal, not always clearly definable as to species. The antelope represents the mythical character who taught the Bambara how to cultivate the land. The horn is a symbol of the millet's growth. For a fascinating discussion of Bamana sculptors, see Brett-Smith's THE MAKING OF BAMANA SCULPTURE-CREATIVITY AND GENDER, and superb examples in
BAMANA-THE ART OF EXISTENCE IN MALI, edited by Colleyn. The Chi Wara Society, is one of the most important Bamana secret societies. Dances are performed annually featuring both male and female antelope headdresses. Performed in the fields, the dances are to ensure a good harvest and, by extension, to guarantee the survival of the community. Chi Wara society is one of the few secret societies that admits women, although only initiated men are eligible to attain the higher levels, and only men may carve the dance masks. The inclusion of women stresses the underlying conc ... read more