Ox Mask (Dugn'be)
Masks representing dugn’be, meaning “the ox raised in the village,” are used in young men’s initiation ceremonies in the Bijagós Islands, on the Atlantic coast of Guinea-Bissau. The cord that runs through the nostrils of this mask shows that the initiate is like a tethered ox. His strengths, like those of the ox, must be both encouraged and controlled.
- Culture: Bijagó
- Medium: Wood, raffia, bone, glass, metal, fur, paint, fiber
- Place Made: Bissagos Islands, Guinea-Bissau
- Dates: 20th century
- Dimensions: 15 1/2 x 19 x 9in. (39.4 x 48.3 x 22.9cm) (show scale)
- Collections:Arts of Africa
- Museum Location: This item is on view in African Storage Annex, East Gallery, 1st Floor
- Accession Number: 1992.69.3
- Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Gerofsky
- Rights Statement: Creative Commons-BY
- Caption: Bijagó. Ox Mask (Dugn'be), 20th century. Wood, raffia, bone, glass, metal, fur, paint, fiber, 15 1/2 x 19 x 9in. (39.4 x 48.3 x 22.9cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Gerofsky, 1992.69.3. Creative Commons-BY
- Catalogue Description: Wooden buffalo helmet mask in two pieces: head and neck attached by series of raffia ties which span holes around perimeter of each piece. Head: bone animal horns extend and curve out from sides of head; in back of head, below level of horns, a band projects out at sides with triangular tips painted white and red representing ears; large projecting glass eyes circumscribed by raised bands of fur nailed to surface; muzzle area and recessed triangle at center of forehead accentuated with white paint; string inserted through holes in nostrils wraps around to back of head. Neck: spiralling ridged surfaces. CONDITION: Generally good. Fur attachments around eyes worn. Deep cracks extending from perimeter at either side of head.
- Record Completeness: Best (83%)