The mask above has been vetted as being authentic with signs of use and age. The leather pieces below the nose were probably once covered with fur.
DAN, GAGON MASKS, Liberia and Ivory Coast
Dan masks are usually used by male associations for rituals, education, social control and entertainment. Masks were thought to embody the most powerful of spirit forces called gle. Each gle has its own character. They brought control and order to village life.
Masks with a large beak-like form and beard of monkey fur, often with a moveable lower jaw, are Gagon masks. Originally an educational mask instructing people on the importance of the hornbill bird to their culture, they are now used mostly for entertainment.