Q: Here is a rare mask of the central figure in the Guacamaya dance in Guatemala. Jon, 897
A: I love the look of this mask, even if it is a little rough. Here is what Jim Pieper has to say in his book Guatemala’s Masks & Drama, “The Guacamaya is a very old dance, which is possibly pre-conquest, with little documentation. It tells the tale of a Mayan king who was turned into a parrot. This dance uses some of the largest carved masks in Mesoamerica. The dance is performed in May in Santa Cruz, Alta Verapaz.”
“Is the patina real or stained on back of the mask? Internet photos are a tough way to tell.” This was part of an email I just received from an experienced collector that questions the masks authenticity. I did look hard at a picture of the back, but it was impossible to tell whether it was natural or antiqued.