This is an emblem of Bansongyi, men’s secret association. This headpiece, also called bansongyi
, presents a python standing upright. Baga People of Guinea carve these snake headpieces which can be as high as 9 feet. Bansongyi lives in the sacred forest and emerges when it is time to begin the boys’ coming-of-age rites. As receptacle for the most powerful spirit, bansongyi
is believed to be the strongest adversary of sorcery and destructive forces that could endanger the well-being of the village. Bansongyi
also appears at the funeral celebrations of the most important members of the community. They were held on the shoulders of a dancer.This particular mask is unusual because its coloration resembles the coloration of a real snake.
A stand for this item is available separately
Exhibited at “Celebrating African-American Heritage”
AlfaArt Gallery, New Brunswick, NJ February 2014
- Size: 71" x 12"
- Shipping: $200.00
- Material: Wood
Quantity: 1 available in stock
- SKU: #G13B11M2501