Q: I have never seen a mask like this one and don’t know where it originates from. Its about 9 inches by 13 inches and would fit on your face; has a couple of eye holes punched in it. Looks like a hippo with a human face. It appears to be carved from a light weight wood. Bill, 639
A: It represents a jaguar who has swallowed a man. It’s based on some old Mexican myths. I thinks there is also some evidence that Aztec soldiers wore skinned Jaguar heads as a headdress/mask combination in rituals or combat. Please note that the man’s face is fully sculpted inside of the gaping mouth. It’s an impressive carving.
But I must also make another point. Masks like this are not used by Mexicans in their village celebrations. This piece was made only for sale to tourists and collectors. This lowers the value considerably. C