Wood and pigments
Commonly attributed to the Grebo people (a generic term that includes the Kru, a small population of the western coast of the Ivory Coast, and their neighbours from eastern Liberia), these masks with two rows of tubular eyes are rare objects, and information on them is also scarce. Their unique and powerful feature is the exaggerated number of projected cylindrical eyes placed on the facial planes. The phrase "four eyes", very common in the vast region of West Africa and a reference to the power of the "witch" to see and gain access into the realm of invisible forces, may have inspired the sculptor in the multiplication of eye forms.
Worn vertically, Kru masks were fitted below a huge headdress which consisted of an arc-shaped structure made of vegetable fibres, covered with cloth and trimmed by a stiff fringe of palm-leafed fibres and long waving feathers, creating awe-inspiring effects.
27 x 16,5 x 12,5 cm