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African Dan Passport Mask

Western Africa, Liberia and Cote d'Ivoire, Dan peoples, ca. early to mid-20th century CE. This is a wooden passport mask, carried by people in Western Africa as miniature copies of a mask worn during performances; they were either sewn onto a piece of cloth and kept in a leather pouch, worn on the small of the back, or worn on the arm or neck to act as an amulet. They are called "passport masks" because they are worn by people when travelling. It is made of dark wood, with shell forming the eyelids; in characteristic style, the eye area is sunken while the forehead and chin thrust outwards. Size: 2.8" W x 5.25" H (7.1 cm x 13.3 cm)

Condition: Expected wear, with two pieces of shell (of four) remaining.

Provenance: Ex-Adeon Gallery, Nick Poolos Collection, acquire before 1974.

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