Thursday, 18. October 2007
Hobbit Name & Elf Name Generator
Tribal African Art
Yohure (Snan, Yaoure, Yaure)
The Yohure masks are considered emblems of yu spirits, very dangerous; they have to be handled with extreme caution. Cases of death that jeopardize the social order are the principal occasions for an appearance of masqueraders. By means of their dance, they restore the social equilibrium of the community and accompany the deceased into the ancestral realm. These masks are worn predominantly on two occasions: the je celebration and the lo funeral ceremony. The first purifies the village after a death and helps the deceased's soul on its way to a final resting place. Women may not participate in funeral ceremonies, neither may they look at the masks, for fear that this encounter with death might jeopardize their fecundity. This means that before starting the village’s purification rituals related to a death, for prudence sake the women are gotten out of the way. With the aid of such masks, the people hope to influence supernatural powers, or yu spirits, that can do harm to humans, but that can also ensure their welfare. Painted masks are mainly worn by dancers during this ceremony, while for lo funeral ceremony, masks covered with black pigments appear. The function of each type of mask is not rigidly fixed, which leads to their appearance during either ceremony.
|Kuba (Bacouba, Bakuba, Bushongo)|
Kuba wooden helmet masks are probably the most commonly produced items, popular with the collectors. These striking masks are wonderfully decorated with geometrical surface designs in dazzling contrasts of color, pattern, and texture. Hide, animal hair, fur, beads, cowrie shells, and feathers ornament the masks, and costumes of bark-cloth, raffia fiber fabric, and beaded elements complete the manifestation of nature spirits, intermediaries between the Supreme Being and the people. One widespread context for masking is initiation. Every several years a group of boys will be inducted into manhood through the initiation which transforms uncircumcised boys into initiated men who possess esoteric knowledge. Funerals are a second important context for masks throughout the Kuba area.
Tribal African Art
Senufo (Senoufo, Siena, Sienna)
The Senufo produce a rich variety of sculptures, mainly associated with the Poro society, to which adult men belong and which maintains the continuity of religious and historical traditions, especially through the cult of the ancestors. The kpelie masks represent a supernatural spirit living in the invisible realm who responds to the supplications of worshippers. It also represents the ancestor. Such masks have been used by the Lo society, which governed the social life of the tribe. Although the occasions on which it is used may differ, it always represents an ancestor closely connected to the society’s origin. The kpelie is said to remind initiates of human imperfection. The Senufo have a vital masquerading tradition associated with various male societies, including Poro. Masked dancers performed at each initiation, at harvest festivals to thank the ancestor for a good crop, in the funerary rites, to chase away harmful spirits from the village and to fight sorcerers. This is an unusually large kpelie mask.
- featuring over 1,200 artifacts from 100 ethnic groups. Items on display include wooden and bronze statues, masks, religious, ritual and domestic objects, furniture and weapons. Learn about art, culture and history of each ethnic group.
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