Ram mask

African, Cote d'Ivoire, Baule peoples
20th century
Artist Unidentified

Object Place: Ivory Coast


Overall: 23.5 x 14 x 10.5 cm (9 1/4 x 5 1/2 x 4 1/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

wood and pigment

Not On View


Africa and Oceania, Contemporary Art



Unlike the much larger Baule masks, which are not supposed to be seen by women, this mask, possibly an ngbolo mask, is much smaller and was used for entertainment purposes. These masks can take on a variety of anthropomorphic or zoomorphic forms and this one depicts a ram whose horns curve downward to frame the face. Masks of this kind may have been used at funerary celebrations or during theater performances


1960, acquired in Paris by Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart