Lot: 149

Antelope dance crest "tjiwara"

Mali, Bamana

Provenance Size Starting price / estimated price
Pierre & Claude Vérité, Paris, France
Stéphane Mangin, Galerie Kanaga, Paris (2015)
H: 27.6 inch 4500 EUR / 8000 EUR

wood, dark brown patina, animal skin (horn tips), vertical type, carrying a fawn, ear ornament (missing on the left), min. dam., insect caused damage, base. "tijwara" masks are danced in male-female pairs. They accompany workers into communal fields, praising and challenging the young men. They also entertain at hoeing contests that recognize a champion farmer. The dancers are male, but they are joined by young women, who fan the "tijwara" to diffuse the power "nyama" that the beasts are believed to emit. The dancers hunch over and lean on canes that evoke forelegs, their movements mimicking an antelope's.

Museum of Primitive Art (ed.), Bambara sculpture from the Western Sudan, New York 1960, p. 39