A superb Bamana Kore Society mask
Lot 611
A superb Bamana Kore Society mask
Sold for US$ 48,000 inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
Property from the collection of Lillian and Robert Bohlen
A superb Bamana Kore Society mask
Mali, of powerful cubistic and angular form; the face, deeply concave and arching forwards, the nose, echoing the geometry of the face, with raised bosses indicating the brow line. Horns rising from either side of the mask; their bases gracefully arching forwards, repeating the angle of concavity of the face, forming the lower portion of the mouth. Fine variegated surface with black lustrous highlights.
height 17 ½in


  • Provenance:
    Alain de Monbrison, Paris
    Entwistle, London & Paris
    Donald Morris Gallery, Birmingham, MI

    The Kore Society is one of the oldest and most prominent Bamana masking societies. The truly exceptional feature of this particular mask, which I was first shown by Steven Morris in Detroit is its exceptional patina (A patina produced by use rather than an overzealous maid!) Clearly this is a surface that shows great age and use.

    Also, in view of the bulging forehead which identifies most Kore masks, this example has a smooth concave face with two small subtle swellings over the open eyes which greatly add to their impact and probably relate them to the
    Koulikoro region (cf. Colleyn, J.P., Bamana 2001; p.177; fig.100).

    Michael Kan, 2008