Destination Nigeria, Africa

This African mask brought back happy childhood memories of living in south-western Nigeria.

My father was a professor at the University of Ibadan in the 1960s.  We lived in a house near the University filled with African art including lots of masks.

I recall accompanying my mother to the marketplace, seeing vibrant, colorful fabric encircling bodies, pungent smells of fresh foods and the cacophony of sounds made by vendors and buyers negotiating in a variety of languages.

African Mask. 3.15.2017

African Mask. 3.15.2017

My siblings and I attended an English school and wore plaid uniforms with white shirts.  When not in school, our parents took us to African music and dance performances frequently, much to my delight.  I even remember ordering my first bottle of wine in French in Dahomey (now Benin) on one of our family trips.

One day, Cook bought a large sea turtle to prepare a special soup for us.  We youngsters were horrified and pleaded with our mother to spare the turtle’s life and let us keep it as a pet.  She acquiesced.  Cook tied the turtle to a post in the backyard but the next day it was gone – stolen for someone’s supper, I am sure.

This Origami African mask design is in Montroll’s Dollar Bill Origami book.  I really liked folding the model but with plain paper not with the dollar bill.  The printed design on the bill distracted from the wonderful features of the mask.



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