Wood, pigment on a metal base

“The rarest and most important masks are called yali. Two horns project upward on each side of the face. The mask is worn with a carefully tailored, three-piece fiber costume that so completely covers the wearer that only the soles of his feet are exposed . The costume consists of a pair of trousers, a shirt that hangs to the knees, and a cowl that is attached to the mask and falls around the wearer’s shoulders. All three pieces are constructed on a close-fitting knotted fiber foundation garment, into which are tied masses of long fibers that are clipped short so that the ensemble resembles a deep-pile shag rug.The yali is short; usually less than five feet (1.5 m.); because it is intended to represent a dwarf spirit from the bush. Of necessity it is worn by a small boy, although the Mossi never admit this.”

– Christopher Roy, The Art of Burkina Faso