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African Yoruba Gelede Wooden Helmet Mask

Lot 0222
**Originally Listed At $200**

Africa, Nigeria, Yoruba, ca. early 20th century CE. A fantastic example of a hand-carved wooden Gelede helmet mask. The face is delightfully delineated with bold features including almond-shaped with incised lashes, a straight nose, slightly parted lips as if speaking, singing, or chanting, cup-shaped ears, and repeated elongated oval patterns that move horizontally down the cheeks, indicating scarification marks. Adding to his appearance is a fancy coiffure comprised of a rising, incised/combed, central section flanked by a double triangle motif on the right side and a crescent tuft of hair behind the left ear. The base is concave to fit the top of the wearer's head, and perforated all around presumably to attach to a costume or ornaments. Size: 6.25" W x 8.75" H (15.9 cm x 22.2 cm)

The Gelede is a celebration of the power of women - spirits, ancestors, and older women of the community - that incorporates art and masked dance in a colorful, lively spectacle. Gelede masks like this one are worn with fabric costumes that are attached to the masks. Mask decorations vary widely, and are meant to show the personality and lineage of the person wearing the mask.

Provenance: ex-Adeon Gallery, Chicago, Illinois, USA acquired prior to 1970

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

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Normal surface wear with scuffs, abraded areas, and nicks/small losses to high point areas (eyes, tip of nose, edges of ears and coiffure) and peripheries. Age cracks and earthen deposits. Nice patina.

Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

African Yoruba Gelede Wooden Helmet Mask

Estimate $300 - $450Oct 29, 2018
Louisville, CO, USA