MSSU African Art Exibit : The MSSU African Art collection features a variety of authentic works of art from various tribes located throughout Central Africa. The objects in the collection range from mundane day to day grooming tools to ritualistic masks and statues.
Makonde Dance Mask
Object Name:
Mask, Dance, Makonde
Other Name:
Mask, Dance, Ritual
Place of Origin:
Makonde, Tanzania / Mozambique, Africa
Aboriginal Indigenous Art.

The Makonde are an ethnic group in southeast Tanzania and northern Mozambique. The Makonde developed their culture on the Mueda Plateau in Mozambique. At present they live throughout Tanzania and Mozambique and have a small presence in Kenya.

The Makonde successfully resisted predation by African, Arab, and European slavers. They did not fall under colonial power until the 1920s. During the 1960s the revolution which drove the Portuguese out of Mozambique was launched from the Makonde homeland of the Mueda Plateau. At one period this revolutionary movement known as 'Frelimo' derived a part of its financial support from the sale of Makonde carvings. The Makonde are best known for their wood carvings and their observances of puberty rites.
Oval—shaped wooden dance mask with heart—shaped concave facial area, slightly protruding brow with large protruding triangular—shaped nose. Oval—shaped protruding eyes with pierced slit centers, oval—shaped open pierced mouth. Two crescent—shaped scarification marks on either cheek. Small circular ears, dark brown patina over entire surface. Light yellow raffia beard starting just over ears, and extending around entire lower half of face.
Guy Mace Collection, (Turblex Company)
Wood W/Patina and Raffia
Ritually Used
Carving / Painting / Weaving
Art Department, Missouri Southern State University
Click to Enlarge
Front ViewFront View
Front View, Close-UpFront View, Close-Up
Right Side ViewRight Side View
Left Side ViewLeft Side View
Rear ViewRear View