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Dogon mask

Identifier: Film Collection no. 175

Scope and Contents

This film is part of the travelling exhibition entitled "Contemporary African Arts," which was mounted by the Field Museum of Natural History of Chicago and shown at the AMNH in 1974. A group of Dogons dance against the background formed by the wattle-and-daub pueblo-style buildings of their village in Mali. The dancers wear vegetable fiber skirts, stained red with dye extracted from hibiscus leaves, and traditional carved wooden kanaga masks embellished with cowrie shells and topped with a large bird image. In a reenactment of dances performed as part of funeral rites, the dancers beat the ground around a corpse with their masks to seek the corpse's forgiveness for allowing death to enter the world through the disobedience of young men.


  • [1974?]

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Not available through interlibrary loan. Contact AMNH Library Special Collections for terms of access.


1 Film Reel (15 minutes) : sound, color ; 16 mm.

1 Videocassette (U-Matic (15 minutes)) : sound, color ; 3/4 in.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

3/4 in., U-Matic, viewing copy


Original format: 16 mm. print; incomplete.


Herbert Baker, producer; Elliot Elisofon, director; Thomas Blakley, photographer.

Dogon mask, [1974?]
Iris Lee
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Museum Archives at the Gottesman Research Library Repository

American Museum of Natural History
200 Central Park West
New York NY 10024 USA
(212) 769-5420