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Dan Art and Masks


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The oval faces, cowrie shells, fabric, raffia and bells, seen in masks 24, 25,26, 27, readily identify them as Dan masks. Dan Mask 26 is a distinct style known as a "racing mask". Its round, wide open eyes allow better vision as the wearer competes in races. The Dan people have inhabited the Ivory Coast and Liberia since the eighth century B.C. A loose confederation of villages totaling some 350,000 individuals, the Dan have had to spend much of their history battling neighboring tribes and sometimes each other. This has given them the reputation as  ferocious fighters, as each Dan warrior sought "tin": individual prestige or glory. In former times, tin was achieved through bravery in war; but the encroachment of colonial powers, and increasingly centralized control has made tribal conflicts less common. Today's young Dan warrior finds his tin through other pursuits. Unity was finally brought to the Dan people with the institution of the Leopard Society or Go in the late 1800s.


Dan Singer Mask #6
African Masks - Dan Mask 6 

Dan Headrest 1
African Headrests - Dan Headrest 1 

Dan Spoon 2
African Spoons - Dan Spoon 2 

Dan Mask 40
African Masks - Dan Mask 40 

Dan Mask 41
African Masks - Dan Mask 41 

Dan Mask 42
African Masks - Dan Mask 42 

Dan Mask 38
African Masks - Dan Mask 38 

Dan Mask 39
African Masks - Dan Mask 39 

Dan Mask 28
African Masks - Dan Mask 28 

Dan Mask 22
African Masks - Dan Mask 22 

Dan Mask 23
African Masks - Dan Mask 23 

Dan Mask 24
African Masks - Dan Mask 24 

Dan Mask 25
African Masks - Dan Mask 25 

Dan Mask 26
African Masks - Dan Mask 26 

Dan Mask 27
African Masks - Dan Mask 27 

Dan Spoon 4
African Spoons - Dan Spoon 4 

Dan Mask 19
African Masks - Dan Mask 19 

Dan Mask 17
African Masks - Dan Mask 17 

Dan Mask 3
African Masks - Dan Mask 3 

Dan Racing Mask #7
African Masks - Dan Mask 7 

Dan Statue 1
African Statues - Dan Statue 1 

Dan Statue 2
African Statues - Dan Statue 2 

Dan Spoon
African Spoons - Dan Spoon 0 

Dan Mask 4
African Masks - Dan Mask 4 

Dan Guerre Mask
African Masks - Dan Mask 0 

Dan Mask 43
African Masks - Dan Mask 43 

Dan Mask 5
African Masks - Dan Mask 5 

 Research Archives: Dan



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