Fang, Gabon. Wood. Colored beads. Cowrie shells. Pigment.
Rare Fang mask, with colored beads.
The masterful application of the different colored beads, gives this mask a most magical and magisterial expression.
There are some bead erasures at different parts of the mask, either perhaps, by extensive use or by weatherization.
The erasure at the bottom of the mask seem to be where the chief of masks or the mask dancers would have held it. Old Africans would have welcomed the weatherization or erasures as authenticating the many ceremonies the mask may have been used, and therefore, its power.
The mask was said to have been assigned many important jobs, such as being danced during a king's coronation, social control or initiation ceremonies.