Photographs © Tim Hamill
11" high x 7" wide x 5.5" deep
This Igbo mask has been vetted as being authentic with signs of use and age.
A common characteristic of Igbo masks is that they are painted. This one has traces of a very dark brown pigment covered with traces of a light brown paint. (See detail below). There is wood loss on the back and wear on the face. The cracks are all stable. With no eye holes it was either worn on the top of the head as a headdress or was not used as a mask.
The best known among them are the so-called Maiden Spirit masks (Agbogho mmwo) which are danced by men at agricultural festivals and funerals of prominent members of the village. Topped by elaborate coiffures, these masks are said to represent the beauty and purity of deceased maidens. Since these masks lack the coiffures, they are of a different type.
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