Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

  • Bobo peoples
  • mask, late 1800s–1975
  • Where object was made: Burkina Faso?
  • wood, staining, pigment, carving
  • Object Height/Width/Depth: 96 x 31 x 28 cm
    Object Height/Width/Depth: 37 3/4 x 12 3/16 x 11 in
  • Gift of Mr. and Mrs. H. Kenneth Palmer
  • Not on display
  • 2007.2878

The helmet style mask depicts a human head with a panel that sits behind the wearer's back. The head as a whole is shortened, with very little forehead. The eyebrows are indicated with carved diagonal lines and the eyes have ridges across them. The cheeks are also prominent with a horizontal ridge across each, but the nose is small and straight. The lips are right above the bottom edge of the helmet portion. The back panel is decorated with a light colored vertical line with red dots, two pair of triangles on either side and red diagonal lines at the top. Two long hair-like extensions extend from the top of the head to the bottom of the back panel.