This particular decorative wall mask is a powerful homage to a revered natural inhabitant of much of the territory of the Brunka people. The title of this work is Owl Totem.
These very elaborate and almost narrative ‘ecological-cultural masks’ are an evolution emerging from the traditional Brunka ceremonial masks used in their annual ceremony, Danza de los Diablitos. Using the same wood species (balsa wood and tropical cedar) used for the worn masks, these unique ‘primitive’ art pieces are reminiscent of story boards allowing the mask artists to render scenes of the landscapes, flora and fauna of the Brunka tribe’s territory, as well as scenes from their native legends, cosmology and Pre-Columbian past.
Seen here in Gonzalez’s strong composition is an ancestral warrior, or durìj (shaman), in the hooked beak of one of the lords of the nocturnal forest. The mixture of feather motifs, jungle vines and foliage, plus other owl species, and owls in their different stages of development in this composition, is simply sublime.
- Tribe: Brunka
- Size: 9 1/2″ x 18 1/2″ (24cm x 47cm)
- Artist: Sergio González R.