Hand Carved African Masks

Clifton Boudman's Collection of Hand Carved Wood Tribal Ancestor Masks from Accura Ghana 


green maskRitual and ceremonial masks are an essential feature of the traditional culture and art of the peoples of . While the sp implications associated to ritual masks widely vary in different cultures, some traits are common to most African cultures. For instance, masks usually have a spiritual and religious meaning and they are used in ritual dances and social and religious events, and a special status is attributed to the artists that create masks and to those that wear them in ceremonies.

mask1In most cases, mask-making is an art that is passed on from father to son, along with the knowledge of the symbolic meanings conveyed by such masks.
Masks are one of the elements of great African art that have most evidently influenced European and Western art in general; in the 20th century, artistic movements such as cubism, fauvism and expressionism have often taken inspiration from the vast and diverse heritage of African masks.

mask2Influences of this heritage can also be found in other traditions such as South- and Central American masked Carnival parades.

Graciously loaned by Clifton Boudman
Professor of Fine Art, Emeritus,University of Maine at Presque Isle, Artist and Film Theorist...