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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Guro, Yaure : Guro Brass Face Mask
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Guro Brass Face Mask - PF.4617
Origin: Central Ivory Coast
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 11.25" (28.6cm) high x 4.25" (10.8cm) wide
Collection: African
Medium: Brass

Location: United States
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How a particular stylistic trend develops is often a matter of speculation. Is it due to a collective effort, the inspiration of a single artist, or through dream visions as some African artists believe? Whatever the initial incentive, it is not necessary to know an object's aesthetic origins in order to appreciate its beauty. When seeing something as lovely as this brass mask, such academic questions seem less important, overshadowed by the object's unique aura.

The Guro have a very pronounced artistic sensibility, as evidenced by their masks and sculptures. They attach particular importance to hairdos, to the extent that hairdressers are considered artists. The most striking aspect of this mask is its delicacy and lovely shape. The oblong face, (a style so admired by artists such as Brancusi and Picasso), exudes a charming character and a feeling of gentleness. This refined aspect is continued in the hair style which is like the twirling designs inside an exotic flower. The crest, in the form of a small head, may represent an ancestor or spirit entity. Though the mask is highly abstract, its realism lies in the artist's intent to create something both very human and mystical at the same time. Perhaps intended to be hung on a wall or pillar, this charming mask must have enchanted many people, as it still does through its artistry and eternal brass.
- (PF.4617)


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