Kanaga Mask; African, Dogon peoples; probably 20th century; 2977


The Phillips Museum of Art, Franklin & Marshall College


Kanaga Mask

About this object

Linear facial mask, deeply carved to a dramatic point. The nose forms a medial ridge and is framed by deeply set rectangular eyes. The geometric superstructure is composed of two opposing planks. Geometric pattern painted in blue and red aged pigment.

The Kanaga mask is used for a variety of ceremonial functions including initiation rites, funerals and ceremonies honoring mythological ancestors. Often the mask is interpreted as a bird with outstretched wings, but it also has deeper symbolic meanings. Characteristically the kanaga mask is polychrome with abstract geometric designs.


African, Dogon peoples

Date Made

probably 20th century

Medium and Materials


Place Made



44 x 19 x 7 inches

Credit Line

Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Berton A. Lowell

Object Type


Object number


Copyright Licence  

All rights reserved



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