Very puzzling

aaaMystrySolvd-965-aQ:  I purchased a mask from a second hand shop in Shrewsbury, UK, last weekend. The mask is wooden but very light and is decorated with engraved lines. Some of the raised sections are highlighted with red, blue and white paint although this is quite well worn. The mask cost £60 and the seller believes it is from the early 1900s but didn’t have any definite information. I love the mask, which is why I bought it, but I would like to know more about its history and I hope that you or one of your readers can help.  Christine, 965

A:  I too find this mask attractive. Wish I knew what it was. Please, dear reader, give Christine and I some help identifying this interesting carving. aaaMystrySolvd-965-b


  • Aaron

    Maori carving made for the tourist trade, from New Zealand. The Polynesian peoples of New Zealand are not known to have worn masks, but they did hang carved faces like this on their buildings and boats.

  • Chris

    I would agree…somewhere between New Zealand and Easter Island…eventually even a skilled carver in Chile with a skill for Southern Pacific designs and for antiquing.

  • Christine

    Hello Bob, Aaron, Chris and other Readers,
    Thank you for your help and comments. As I originally said to Bob I love this and it is nice to hear other people’s thoughts.
    Best wishes

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