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Hard to recognize East African

Makonde

Makonde

Q:  I purchased this mask from an auction or estate sale and was wondering if you could tell me if it’s a tourist mask or actual tribal. Thank you. David, 681

A:  I was having trouble identifying this mask and asked my friend Aaron to help. His first choice was the Makonde people who live in both Tanzania and Mozambique. (more…)


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A little about age

Borneo

Kapit, Borneo

Q:  This mask was bought on Borneo and is said to be from the Iban on Borneo used for rice-field ceremony. It comes from the Kapit area. I am curious whether it is authentic (indication is that it comes from the 1920’s).  Adam, 680

A:  Simple, primitive masks that look like this can be found in many cultures throughout the world including African, Himalayan, Timorese, Mexican, etc. Fortunately, you know exactly where yours was made. (more…)


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A little about authenticity

Baule Goli mask

Baule Goli mask

Q:  I found this at a goodwill store. Just wondering what the background is and if it appears to be authentic.  Nathan, 679

A:  Your mask an attractive reproduction of a classic Goli Kpan mask from the Baule people of Ivory Coast. This type of Goli mask always shows a beautiful women with an elaborate coiffure and elegant scarification. Yours is quickly made and artificially aged, but nicely proportioned and traditional in style. I like it. (more…)


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Popular Indonesian mask

Rangda, Bali

Rangda, Bali

Q:  Bought this mask at an estate not sure what I want to do with it probably to be honest sell it.   Lile, 678

A:  This is Rangda, the most popular character mask from the classic Balinese dance dramas. People find them colorful and exotic. It is an inexpensive one that has been carved and painted quickly and can be purchased for very little money. If you search you can find photos of much finer examples, but they will cost more. A well made Rangda that has been used by a professional dancer for a long time would cost even more. Actually, B, C and D all apply to this particular example.


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A pretty girl all dressed up

Dan, Ivory Coast

Dan, Ivory Coast

Q:  I purchased this mask eighteen years ago from an individual. This mask is of particular interest due to its use of materials. Wood mask with hammered metal teardrop under the eye and each is attached with three brads. The mask is surrounded with cloth and crudely sewn. Seashells are attached to the cloth with thread. Two folded over half round circles are attached thru the cloth and have what I assume are rocks in them to make noise. Unfortunately, my wife discarded the certificates of origin. Wood mask size 5” wide X 8” tall. From cloth to  cloth 9“ wide.  From cloth to bells 12.5” tall.  James, 677

A:  Thanks for the good description and the three photos. (more…)


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World traveling mask

Ecuador

Ecuador

Q:  I have a second mask if you would like to see it. I got them from my uncle some years ago. He got the 2 of them in Russia about 25 years ago, though I’m sure they are much older than that. I assume they are of Germanic origin but really don’t know. Any info you can provide would be great. Thanks.  Josh, 676

A:  Foreign folk art often turns up thousands of miles from where it was made. (more…)


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Don’t be fooled by old looks

Nepal

Nepal

Q:  We purchased this mask and have no idea about it.  It is made of one piece of wood.  The motif atop the mask is of a man riding a cat which has a man in it’s  mouth.  There appears to be an export wax stamp on it but we cannot make out the characters and there is a price tag of $890.00.  Lizzy, 675

A:  Masks like this have a nice antique feel and are excellent wall hangings. (more…)


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Rare protective mask

Pre WWII gas mask w accessorise

Pre-WWII gas mask w accessories

Q:  I’m a collector based in Chicago who specializes in mostly gas masks or war masks weather they be cold weather pieces or pilot respirators. I have a few very scarce pieces that I was wondering if you would be interested in purchasing. The mask pictured is an unknown WWI era Italian prototype mask. It was obtained from a very well known collector in Spain who owns about 2500 masks. It comes in a tin which is stamped 1916 but the mask may possibly be post-war and just stuffed into an older tin. It is definitely pre-WWII though. It looks to be based off of the tampon mask but has multiple strange features which make it stand out from the rest. The mask was found in a chemical factory along with a couple other rare WWI pieces.  Rick, 674

A:  What a great mask this is, and I’m so glad to share it with our viewers. (more…)


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Mask carving in Bali

Bali decorative

Bali decorative

 Q:  I have been traveling for 12 years and collected a few masks on the way. Only recently I have looked into my boxes with my stored collection and found this nondescript mask, which I can’t for the sake of it remember where I bought. Maybe you can help me?  Bo, 673

A: This is an unpainted decorative wood carving from Bali done in a combination of styles. (more…)


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Beautiful West African mask

Baule, Ivory Coast

Baule, Ivory Coast

Q:  Hello,
I have this African mask, but I am unsure
of its tribal attribution. Can you or any of your visitors assist? Thank you very much!  Andrew, 671

A:  Looks like a Baule or Guro mask from the Ivory Coast of West Africa. (more…)


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