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Kran Monkey Mask, Côte d'Ivoire / Liberia #817
- Kran Monkey Mask, Côte d'Ivoire / Liberia #817
- A Kran Mask of cubistic form, border district Liberia/Ivory Coast, region of Biankouma, white, reddish and blackened pigments and animal hairs, incl. stand.
- Measurements: 24cm; approx 9.5"
- Condition: Good
- Custom Base included.
The Kran / Krahn People are an Ethnic Group of Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire. This group belongs to the Kru Language Family, and its People are sometimes referred to as the Wee / We, Guéré, Sapo, or Wobe. It is likely that Western contact with the Kru Language is the primary reason for the development of these different names.
The majority Kran People still practice a form of Animist Religion, Ancestor Worship, and Villages are organized under the auspices of their Gla Secret Society.
The Gla Secret Societies of the Kran People are charged with Maintaining Social Control and safety, including Judicial Functions, as well as officiating at Harvest Ceremonies and Funerals. They use “Male” Masks, such as the example above, to Confer Authority on the Wearer in the Performance of his important Community Functions.
“Dan People, who are also known by the name Yacuba, live in the western part of the Côte d'Ivoire and into Liberia where the land is forested in the south and bordered by a savannah in the north. The 320,000 Dan People mostly make their living from farming cocoa, rice and manioc. Before unifying Secret Societies were set up at the turn of the Century, each Dan Village was an autonomous socio-political unit governed by a Chief elected on the base of his wealth and social position. Today, the Leopard Society acts as a major regulator of Dan Village Life and initiates young men during their isolated periods of three to four months in the forest. Dan People have achieved notoriety in the area for their Entertainment Festivals, which were historically Village Ceremonies. During these Festivals, Masked Performers dance on stilts.”
Source: Baquart, Jean-Baptiste. The Tribal Arts of Africa. New York: Thames and Hudson Inc. 1998. Print.