BAMANA KOMO MASK 2, Mali

Photographs © Tim Hamill

BAMANA, KOMO HELMET MASK 2, 22" length x 6" height,
wood, some encrustation, $600
SOLD

Bamana Komo masks and headdresses are of elongated animal head form decorated with actual antelope horns, porcupine quills, bird skulls, feathers and other objects as vessels of power. The headdress are worn horizontally. The sacrificial material seen in the encrustation on the surfaces of these headdresses (also known as a helmet masks) are an indication of their connection with one of the three main Bamana power societies: Komo, Kono and Nama. These headdress are typical of the Komo society, which functions as the custodian of tradition and is concerned with all aspects of community life-agriculture, judicial processes, and passage rites. The Komo is a secret power association of priests, knowledgeable elders, and blacksmiths that forms the central Bamana social institution. Members of the blacksmith clan are born into the Komo society because of their ability to employ the forbidden power of fire to transform matter from one form into another. Blacksmiths of the Komo society wear the society headdress or komo-kun during a dance to invoke nyama, the force that activates the universe.

This Komo mask no longer has its horns or other additions.

From an article in African Arts,  Winter, 2001  by Jean-Paul Colleyn,  Laurie Ann Farrell

RETURN TO BAMANA KOMO MASKS PAGE

GO TO BAMANA KONO MASKS PAGE

RETURN TO BAMANA ART PAGE

RETURN TO BAMANA MASKS PAGE

GO TO BAMANA CHI WARA PAGE

RETURN TO MASKS AND HEADS PAGE

GO TO BAMANA JO FIGURES PAGE

GO TO BAMANA BOLI PAGE

[RETURN TO HOME PAGE] [CONTACT GALLERY] [ORDERING] [HYPERLINKS]