Passport Mask
Dan, Liberia, Early 20th C.
PROVENANCE: Collected by Dr. George Harley prior to 1943, and bought from him at his mission station in Ghanta, Liberia, by Esther Warner Dendel in 1943, then by descent to her husband, Jo Dendel

This small wooden passport mask would have been worn on the body, kept in a leather pouch, or sewn onto a piece of cloth and represented group or family affiliation. They are used predominantly by the Dan people. The masks provide a sense of belonging, can act as witnesses to initiation ceremonies and can offer protection like amulets to their owners when they are away from home. This particular mask is abstract in form, with simple lines used for facial definition. The curvature of the wood, as seen from the side, helps to create the illusion of a face.

Height: 2.75 in.
IN 10-10-13 / SOLD