Q: Thank you for this great service. Here is a mask I purchased from Mauna Kea Galleries. I know very little about the mask. It is made of a hard wood and said to collected 1845 and looks to be made from a oak barrel. It looks to have been nailed at one point. The wood looks a little to fresh to be from 1845 to me.
Please help with this mystery item. It measures 11 3/4 by 5 1/2 inches. Ryan, 691
A: This is a very intriguing piece. Did the Gallery tell you why they think it is from 1845? How much did you pay for it? It is not a Polynesian mask or any other kind of ethnographic artifact, however I think it could be something a sailor carved back in the old days. He might have been inspired by a Balinese half-mask he saw in port. But that’s just an idea. Maybe one of our visitors will recognize it as something much different.