Dan Stilt Dancer Trophy Figure / Doll

  • Tribe: Dan
  • Origin: Man, Ivory Coast
  • Approx Age: 1960 - 1970
  • Materials: Wood, Cloth, Raffia
  • Dimensions cm: 49 tall including base
  • Ref. Number: 0851

An endearing authentic Dan Stilt Dancer Trophy Figure. This piece is quite unique in itself as it has an articulated waist which allows it to move forwards and backward at its middle. Its missing its original swishes that it would have held at the end of its arms. The appearance of this figures dress and mask are consistent with the age that has been approximated. A really quirky and admirable piece that is not very readily found.

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These Dan stilt dancer trophy figures / dolls that come from the Ivory Coast represent the actual dancers and would be made in their honour and kept in their home like a trophy for their expertise and prowess in dancing, as becoming a stilt dancer is a real challenge and a very difficult process and high regarded within the Dan community.


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The Dan are an extremely musical people. They don’t do anything without music. Rice, Death, Marriage, Birth, Weather are all celebrated with music.

Dan sculptors mainly produce masks which deal with virtually every element in Dan society, including education, competition, war, peace, social regulation, and of course, entertainment. They also produce stylised wooden spoons and intricate game boards used for mancala, a common game of “count and capture”

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The Dan, also called Gio or Yakuba, an ethnolinguistic grouping of people inhabiting the mountainous west-central Côte D’Ivoire and adjacent areas of Liberia. The Dan belong to the Southern branch of the Mande linguistic subgroup of the Niger-Congo language family. They originated somewhere to the west or northwest of their present lands, perhaps among the Malinke (Mandingo). The Dan are closely related to the Gere (also spelled Ngere, or Guere) to the south.