TITLE: Guro Gu Mask
TYPE: face mask
GENERAL REGION: Africa
COUNTRY: Côte d’Ivoire
ETHNICITY: Guro
DESCRIPTION: Gu Mask
MAKER: Unknown
CEREMONY: Celebration; Entertainment; Funeral
AGE: ca. 1990s
MAIN MATERIAL: wood
OTHER MATERIALS: oil-based paint

The Guro gu mask represents a beautiful young woman. It forms part of the trio of sacred masks with the zamble and zaouli. In the past, gu was the wife of zamble, but in modern rituals she is represented as the wife of his brother, zaouli. All three masks are cult objects to which sacrifices are periodically made to bring prosperity to the family that owns them and to drive away evil spirits.  They are danced for celebrations and as entertainment, and also at funerals and to honor ancestors.

This mask portrays a different masked dancer, the zamble, on the crest.

For more on Guro masking traditions, see Eberhard Fischer, Guro (Prestel, 2008).