Africa

Nice West African mask

Q:  This African mask measures a total of 14 inches tall by 8 inches wide. I bought it last year at an online auction for about $26.00. I liked its whimsical expression and signs of vintage usage. Do you have any opinions? Thanks again, Diane, 1309

A:  You may have scored a real winner. This is a very nice Aduma mask from Gabon. Yes, the blue diamond shape and the single horn are things I’ve never seen before. (Maybe that’s why some other collectors past it over.) It is a classic design that looks like it’s been used a lot. I would suggest that you get it appraised by someone who is a specialist in African traditional art.  A

2 Comments

  • Andrey

    However, B5 (and similar letter/number markings) are usually used by the modern day workshops as a wholesaler’s identification.

    • Bob Ibold

      You may be right. I’m capable of being overly optimist because so many of the mystery mask photos sent in are tourist junk. I don’t post them. About 3/4ths of the masks I see are fakes!

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