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Large Bamana Marionette Head/Mask with Modern Acrylic Stand from Mali

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Wood-carved marionette head with pronounced facial features including large bulging eyes, protruding ears, a long slender nose, a diminutive mouth showing teeth, and a multi-layered coiffure in black pigment/paint. The backside of the mask/marionette head has several holes for attachment, a fiber cord, and a varied patina.

Marionettes were used in the performances of burlesques and comedies. A human head like this example (known as the Merenkun), was used in public presentations of satire. Dance also plays an important role. Puppets, masks and people dance, each in their own way and for their own purpose. The dances of the puppets and masks (by hidden dancers) serve to express their characters, whereas the (visible) people-dancers are a means of expressing feelings of togetherness and joy.

Overall, the marionette shows good signs of ritual use and is presented on a substantial modern acrylic stand. This is an exceptional work of vintage carving from Mali and would be perfect in a wide range of interior environments from an entry to a great room or a study in a Modern, Mid-Century, Boho, or Organic Modern setting.

Place of Origin: Mali

Date of Manufacture: 1960s

Condition: Excellent

Wear: Consistent with age and use. Please refer to pictures.

Dimensions:

Carving: 15.25 in. H X 9 in. W X 9.5 in. D / Base: 8 in. Diam. X 3 in H

Total: 23.5 in. H

Reference: The Met, Center for Puppetry Arts, Elisabeth Den Otter, Seattle Art Museum

Large Bamana Marionette Head/Mask with...

Regular Price
$938.00
Sale Price
$938.00
Regular Price
Sold Out
Unit Price
per 
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