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Funerary Headdress (Tugunga)

Arts of Africa

On View: African Storage Annex, East Gallery, 1st Floor
In the kingdoms of Cameroon, masks are often associated with the Nsoro, a secret men’s association that maintains social order and acts as a police force and court of law. Masks are worn during the funerals of the association’s members and during other official activities. Placed on top of the head so that they tower above spectators, the masks inspire respect and awe.
CULTURES Bamum; or Tikar
MEDIUM Wood, rattan, pigment
DATES late 19th century
DIMENSIONS 33 x 14 3/16 x 14 3/16 in. (83.8 x 36 x 36 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in African Storage Annex, East Gallery, 1st Floor
CREDIT LINE Gift of Mrs. Melville W. Hall
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CAPTION Bamum. Funerary Headdress (Tugunga), late 19th century. Wood, rattan, pigment, 33 x 14 3/16 x 14 3/16 in. (83.8 x 36 x 36 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mrs. Melville W. Hall, 73.36. Creative Commons-BY
IMAGE front, CUR.73.36_print_front_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Funerary headdress. The carved head of blackened wood, decorated by an ochre pigment decoration, rests on a wood neck-base. This base is covered by basketry weavings. The forms of the face are flat in character and are marked contrast to the undulating lines of the headdress.
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