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Cover thumbnail for Web of Art 17: Transformations, Masks and Shamans Web of Art 17: Transformations, Masks and Shamans


You will be able to learn the information more effectively if you print out the section below and fill it in as you go through the text. There is a short self quiz at the end and a series of discussion questions which your instructor may ask you in class. If you are taking the course wholly on line, your instructor may ask you to answer in a short written essay. TRANSFORMATIONS: 1. Define for identify the following: Bunda Society Chief Seattle False Face Society firespitter lost wax medicine man memorial pole Poro Society power figure Shang T’ao-tieh totemism 2. Give two characteristics of African art that appealed to 20th century avant-garde European artists: a. b. 3. List three functions of masks and masked dancers in African society: a. b. c. 4. Describe the role played by the “ancestors” in African society. 5. The color white often symbolized __________________ on African masks. 6. Copper was first smelted in ancient Persia (Iran) and Afghanistan around ____________. Bronze is formed by a mixture of ________________ and _______________. Why was it superior to copper? Name two areas where bronze was made at a very early date: _________________ and ______________. 7. Iron weapons were first used around __________________ BCE. 8. What characteristics of gold made it so prized by people the world over? 9. What people are generally considered to have been the first to develop bronze into a true artistic medium? 10. What is shamanism? List three areas where it was practiced: a. b. c. List four characteristics that Joseph Campbell believed distinguished a shaman: a. b. c. d. 11. What did Raven symbolize for the Native Americans of the Northwest Coast? 12. What was the purpose of a potlatch? 13. List three characteristics that distinguish the Northwest Coast art style: a. b. c. 14. Select an example of Northwest Coast art and compare it to one created by the Plains Indians. List four ways in which they differ. a. b. c. d. 15. Identify an image from this lesson that you admire, briefly describe it and say why it appeals to you. SELF QUIZ Write the information requested for each image looking only at the thumbnail or enlarged image . When you have finished check your answers by consulting the appropriate “info” page. Give yourself 10% for every correct answer. #18: SUBJECT/ TITLE: ______________________________________ #49: SUBJECT/ TITLE: _____________________________________ # 22: COUNTRY:___________________________________ #46: STYLE: ______________________________________ #20 : TYPE OF FIGURE: ___________________________________________ #3: COUNTRY: ______________________________________ #31: STYLE & COUNTRY: _________________________________ #55: TITLE & COUNTRY: _________________________________________ #39: STYLE: _________________________________ #37: SUBJECT: _________________________________ DISCUSSION QUESTIONS Use the Transformation Questions program and answer the following: 1. Discuss the purpose of the following masks: #01a(afr01082), #01b (afr01010), #01c (afr01056), #01d (nam00008) and #01e (nam0005). Do you see any similarity of purpose in those from Africa and those by Native Americans? 2. What are totemic animals? Consider #02a (nam03001), #02b (nam02026) What function did the animals on #02c (afr00014) and #02d (afr00013) fulfill? Should they be considered totemic animals? 3. What practices did Joseph Campbell identify with shamanism? How do they apply to the following images: #03a (chi00004), #03b (rus00001), #03c (nam03019), #03d (nam00011), #03e (prc00003), #03f (nam00003), #03g (nam01056), #03h (nam00001). How do they relate to Paleolithic shamans like those seen on #03i (pal01070) and #03j (pal01c72)? Are African healers like the one on #03k (afr00001) usually considered to be shamans? If not, how do their practices differ? 4. What is the meaning of the two altar shown on #04a (nam0004) and the shirt shown on #04b(nam00006) Discuss the relationship that Native Americas felt with the land and the relevance today of the words said by Chief Joseph when he was forced to give up his tribal lands.


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Mimgangi dancer.

PENDE Anonymous (active 17th c - Present)
20th c African (Central) Pende Applied Arts

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