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Bwa, Burkina Faso and Mali

Hawk mask. Over 300,000 Bwa people are scattered across Burkina Faso and Mali. The Bwa are farmers who grow grain, especially millet, sorghum and corn. The Bwa masks represent nature spirits. The polychrome masks in horizontal shapes symbolize butterflies or hawks. The present one depicts a hawk. The hawk mask dances energetically. The geometric designs convey coded information to the initiates, and meanings vary by clan and level of initiation. The geometrical pattern on the back may represent the separation of knowledge from ignorance, the essence of the initiation process. 

Material:  wood

Size:  H. 42”, W. 9”, D. 5”

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