Fire Spitter Mask
Senufo, Côte d'Ivoire, early 20th C.
PROVENANCE: acquired by Evelyn Annenberg Jaffe Hall, from Roudillion in Paris, March 29, 1967. Then by decent to present owner.

Fire spitter masks are both revered and feared by the Senufo. These masks have a personal connection to the natural forces, which can be channeled through the individual sculptures. They were used in dances by senior male society members. This particular mask is a combination of different animalistic features. The snout is long, it's mouth bearing large teeth. The facial features are very humanistic, with forward facing eyes and nose, while the ears and horns give off a mammalian quality. There is a small reptile, possibly a lizard, and bird carved on top of the head. The horns are long and textured with concentric ribbed striations. The patina is unique and consistent with heavy use. Scrapers marks, from carving, are visible across the entire plane of the mask.

Height: 39" in. from tip of horn to bottom of the mouth.
IN 12-10-13 / Price on Request