About this artwork
These headdresses were all worn by men in male-female pairs during performances celebrating the mythical farming beast named Chiwara, which introduced the Bamana people to agriculture. The rituals motivated young men to work hard. Each headdress combines the graceful horns of an antelope with the body of an aardvark. A young male calf sits upon the female’s back, symbolizing the fertile union of men and women and of the earth and the sun.
Currently Off View
- Arts of Africa
- Pair of Headdresses (Chiwara Kunw)
- Wood, metal, brass tacks, and grasses
- left: 98.4 × 40.9 × 10.8 cm (38 3/4 × 16 1/8 × 4 1/4 in.); right: 79.4 × 31.8 × 7.6 cm (31 1/4 × 12 1/2 × 3 in.)
- Ada Turnbull Hertle Endowment