Djimini Do Men's Society Ceremonial Mask


The Djimini, or Jimini, are relatives of the Senufo people in Ivory Cost, West Africa. Though impacted by their Baule and Senufo neighbors, their artistic style has recognizable independent characteristics. Influenced greatly by traditional animism beliefs, the human faces are accompanied by animal features such as horns, wings and protruding ears.

This delicately carved mask is crested with horns that represents a bush cow, and a hornbill carving that is honored as a symbol of fertility. Masks are worn with elaborate costumes of a shirt, grass skirt, and trousers made from their locally woven cotton. Each time the mask is used in ceremony, it is cleaned and given a coat of wax. It is then repainted to enhance its scarification and facial details.

These masks are traditionally used by men of the 'Do' society, which presides over the social and political structure of the village. They are used to dance in initiations and rites of passage ceremonies, including the funerals of holy men and even to mark the end of Ramadan, and other important holidays. This wooden mask is a deep, rich brown color, with some faint blue and white paint. It is 11 inches tall, 6 inches wide, and 4 inches deep. It comes with a metal stand that gives it a total height of 14 inches.

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