The Chi Wara tribal dance performed in Mali.
Total height – 181cm
The mythology of the Bamana people of Mali tells the story of an antelope named Chi Wara who first taught farming skills to humanity. The headpieces were worn by a Bamana society to represent the mythical agricultural animal during dances held at sowing and harvesting times. At the start of the rainy season after the fields have been seeded, the Chi Wara crests are danced in the evenings. The Bamana farms became so bountiful that they had too much corn for their own use. They wasted it, thinking that it was easy to cultivate. Chi Wara grew disappointed and buried himself in the earth. This disturbed the elders of the Bamana, who regretted that they had lost him. They then ordered that a sculpture be made in memory of Chi Wara, to honour him for teaching them how to farm the land. Many elaborate headdresses have been created over the years in his honour.
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