CREST MASK "Ciwara" or "Tyi wara" Style of Bamako Culture Bambara, Mali

Frédéric Coridon


"Ciwara" or "Tyi wara" CREST MASK
Bamako style
Bambara culture, Mali
First half of the 20th century
Wood, glass beads, skin, metal, seeds and cowries
H .: 34; Length: 87; Thickness: 16 cm

Crest mask carved with a stylized male antelope standing on four flexed legs banded with skin sections and adorned with glass bead bracelets. They rest on a circular base constituting the "cap" of the mask marked with cut marks.
Characteristic of the Bamako style, this Ciwara mask has long horizontal horns with turned decoration, a particularly elongated and openwork muzzle. Its horseshoe-shaped ears are pierced and adorned with metal buckles from which a chain is attached. Its cylindrical neck, imbricated in the body of the anima, is entirely covered with rows of necklaces with various pearls, including seeds, glass beads or even a band of skin supporting cowries.

These masks still dance today. They are usually attached to a basketry cap and worn on the top of the head for ceremonies related to agriculture and the fertility of the land. They danced in pairs, on one side the male antelope and on the other, the female and her calf.

It bears an old label mentioning the provenance.

Origin :
-Former Jean-Pierre Laprugne collection.
- Former Aristide Courtois collection, brought back to France in the 1930s.

Text and photos © FCP CORIDON

Condition Very good state

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