Bassa Family Mask - Liberia

This Bassa family mask immediately communicates a sense of power, drawing the gaze and holding it firmly. A peaked and classically projecting brow overhangs the eyes, an elongated nose and broad cheeks that terminate in a pointed chin. The profile shows a graceful curve of refined strength. Smooth, unadorned facial planes contrast dramatically with the dense and heavily incised coiffure that crowns the mask. The mode of abstraction used by the carver, hinting at the geometric, lends this piece a deep sense of monumentality and calm not always found in other examples of its type.

Late 19th or early 20th century
6 1/2" h 4" w
Provenance: Private European collection
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