My Protector African Mask

Victor Dushie
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  • Crafted in Ghana and imported into the United States.
  • Hand carved African decor.
  • Measures 13.5 inches (Height) x 5.5 inches (Width) x 2.4 inches (Depth)
  • Carved out of Ofuntum wood.
  • Each mask is carved by hand by an artisan in Ghana so there may very slight and subtle differences in size, color and motif. This is what each mask unique and true piece of African art.
Description

In traditional African cultures, the concept of protectors is deeply ingrained, manifesting in various forms such as revered ancestors, deities, and even totemic animals. These protectors are believed to offer guidance, wisdom, and safety to the community and shield individuals from harm. Rituals, ceremonies, and the creation of sacred artifacts are common practices aimed at invoking these protective spirits. The role of protectors extends beyond mere physical safeguarding; they are also seen as custodians of moral values and cultural heritage, ensuring the transmission of important traditions from one generation to the next. This profound respect for protective entities underscores a communal ethos centered on care, respect, and interdependence, a characteristic of traditional African societies.

The mask, called My Protector and created by Victor Dushie, is designed to evoke a sense of protection for the home or location where it is displayed. While some may refer to these spirits as "Guardian Angels," in other cultures and religions, these entities may be known by different names. You can place this mask in any home or community where you seek protection from above.

African masks are a fundamental aspect of African culture, encapsulating the depth of rituals, traditions, and histories that define the continent's diverse societies. Traditionally, these masks were worn and used in ceremonies, rituals, and celebrations. They played essential roles, being utilized in rites of passage ceremonies, communicating with ancestral spirits, and invoking assistance from above during times of drought, conflict, or other community challenges and adversities.

Although the ceremonial significance of African masks may have faded in modern times, their cultural importance endures. Today, they are highly sought-after as decorative wall art, celebrated for their beauty, symbolism, and narratives. This admiration ensures that African masks continue to educate and connect people with Africa's cultural heritage, bridging the gap between historical and modern worlds while honoring the timeless spirit of African cultures.

Each mask is approximately 13.5 inches in height, 5.5 inches in width, and 2.4 inches in depth and is expertly crafted from Ofuntum wood. Before reaching the hands of the artisan for detailed carving, the wood is allowed to dry thoroughly to ensure stability and longevity. The surface is then meticulously sanded to bring out the natural luster of the wood.

Adorned with a textured aluminum plate and detailed headdress and featuring varying shades of brown deepened by accents of black designed to harmonize with the aluminum's metallic sheen. Weighing in at approximately .8 lbs, these masks are a testament to the fusion of traditional craftsmanship and contemporary aesthetics, embodying a unique blend of cultural heritage and artistic innovation. The aluminum accents on the cheeks are meant to represent traditional African scarification practices.

African scarification is a traditional practice in many African cultures, where the skin is intentionally cut and sometimes irritated to encourage keloid scarring in patterns or specific designs. Far beyond mere body modification, scarification holds deep cultural, spiritual, and social significance. It serves as a rite of passage, marking milestones such as puberty, marriage, or childbirth. Scarification can also denote social status, clan identity, beauty, courage, and strength. In some communities, the scars are believed to carry protective properties and connect individuals spiritually to their ancestors. Despite its decline due to modern influences and health concerns, scarification remains a potent symbol of identity and heritage in many African societies.

Ofuntum wood, a prized material from West Africa, is highly regarded by artisans for its exceptional durability and ease of carving. This robust hardwood features a fine grain that facilitates the creation of sculptures with intricate details and seamless finishes. Known for its resistance to wear and the effects of aging, ofuntum wood ensures that each artwork not only maintains its beauty over time but also gains character. Art pieces made from ofuntum wood are cherished not solely for their visual appeal but also for the rich cultural heritage and expert craftsmanship they represent. Opting for artwork fashioned from ofuntum wood means choosing a piece that embodies the vibrant spirit and traditions of West African culture.

Designed for decorative use, it is intended as wall decor, transforming any space into a gallery of African heritage. Hand-crafted, each mask is unique, with slight and/or subtle variations in color, size, and motif that only add to its authenticity and charm. Owning this mask means more than just decorating a space; it means keeping alive the spirit of Africa.

Edition Hand Carved
Edition Size Each African Mask is Crafted by a Local Artisan and Ghana and is Unique Piece of African Art.
Height 13.5 inches
Length 5.5 inches
Medium Ofuntum wood
Signed Unsigned
SKU 381092
Width 2.4 inches
Victor Dushie

Victor Dushie

Victor Dushie, who was born in Accra, Ghana, is inspired by the city's woodcarving tradition. He imbues each piece with a personal touch that connects the collector to Africa's rich cultural heritage. Using locally sourced Sese wood, Victor combines traditional craftsmanship with modern design to create pieces that tell stories of perseverance, community, and beauty.

Most in stock items ship in 0 to 5 business depending upon the shipping method selected during checkout. Large framed artwork requires an additional 1 to 5 days of processing time to allow for framing. All orders over $250 ship signature required.  Pre-Orders, identified by a “Reserve Now” checkout button, can take 3 to 14 business days to process and ship.  If there is an issue with your order we will notify you with 1 to 2 business days. For additional information please visit our: Shipping Policy

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