M-9 Dance Mask, Barak

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M-9 Dance Mask, Barak

Inland Turubu area, East Sepik, PNG 19th / early 20th Century. Wood, pigment.

19th / early 20th Century. Wood, pigment.
The form of the barak, with high dominant brow, an elegant, curved side view, and sharp pointed nose, give theses masks a strength and simplicity that masks from other regions rarely achieve. The mask is dark in colour, embellished with typical red and white pigments.
These masks represent male mythical spirits and were generally stored away from the village in a small bush hut, that acted shrine-like. Such masks helped with hunting and garden fertility: importantly also they were danced in male initiation ceremonies. It is often referred to as a “mosquito mask”, but in fact represents a bird totem.

Price on application

153 x 59 cm

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