Masks of the World


The best Noh masks are carved wood

Japanese Noh

Japanese Noh

Q: This Noh mask is made up of layers– the back is black lacquer, then white gesso, and finally a brown fibrous material. 21cm tall. Any idea of it’s age, what character it represents?  Rho, 530

A: The Noh theater tradition goes way back. The best masks have always been carved wood. For over 100 years they have also been molded out of composite materials like this one, papier mache, and ceramics. Yours could be 19th century. It’s a male character, of which there are many that are hard to distinguish from one another. Maybe one of our bloggers is a Noh theater enthusiast and can introduce us to this guy. A-


Categories:   East Asia


  • Posted: May 6, 2014 04:40

    alex hearne

    this is amazing guys keep up the good work and make and find more masks so we can see all the amazing work from the old day fellas like the suid mask, mitch muzzed up 3stopmsuids
  • Posted: April 7, 2016 12:38


    A young female mask, the blackened teeth shows it as thus. Note the slant of her eyes the strands of her hair, the slightly parted lips. I would say Ko-omote, the most common female mask.