Tlacololero mask from Guerrero, Mexico

Q:  I’m having a hard time figuring out where this mask would be from. It’s very simple but the wood seems to have some age to it. Any advice would be great thanks!  Dustin, 1182

A:  I think this face would have been used in the Dance of the Tlacololeros at least 50 years ago. That thick wood is probably tzompantli, a light weight material favored by Mexican carvers in the old days. Having said that, there is no way I can be sure because Mexican carvers have been making and aging fakes since the late 19th century. Unlike an African mask, the odds favor this piece as being authentic. I would recommend it to any serious mask collector.  A-




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