e2w8m291.jpg (36211 bytes)We (Gere, Guere, Guere Wobe, Wee), Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire

Bugle face mask. The We, estimated at 100,000  live in the southwest of the forested Côte d’Ivoire and the southeast of Liberia. They are in fact two separate ethnic groups – the Guere (also known as Ngere) and the Wobe – although they share numerous customs and beliefs. Rice, yams, taro, manioc, maize, and bananas are the primary crops grown. Farming and hunting have been largely replaced by laboring in the diamond camps or working at the rubber plantations. Confederations govern both ethnic groups -- the largest is the warrior confederation, which is led by a military chief, who also acts as a civil authority. As symbols of societal beliefs and values, their masks reinforce respect for the rules and functioning of society. This mask represents a forest spirit. Formerly, bugle masks carried out important social control functions, including judicial decisions, law enforcement, criminal punishment, fine collection, and dispute settlement. Their aggressive, lively performance was intended to instruct in proper behavior, although in recent decades this punitive power has declined.

Material: wood

Size: H. 14”, W. 8”, D. 7”









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