This is a Dan mask with the signature high-domed forehead, slit eyes, concave face, protruding mouth and covered in a smooth, rich brown patina. It is adorned with Cowrie shells, raffia, and metal bells that frame the face.
Dan mythology separates the world into two spheres: the sphere of the village and the sphere of the forest. When a Dan boy reaches 16, he must venture forth from his safe village environment into the hazardous forest. There he must prove his courage by hunting dangerous animals using only a spear. When the elders are convinced of his courage, he is initiated into manhood using this mask.