Yam mask

Yam mask. Coiled cane and natural pigments. Wombisa village. Southern Abelam people. PNG. Circa 1940. Cm. 38 h. (1'3" h.). Great colors and expression, fine aged patina on reverse. This striking mask has a round, fairly naturalistic face with good colors and big ears. While the colors are fresh you can see from the aged patina on the reverse that the mask is an old one. Remember that these yam mask are repainted every time they are used. In fact it would be an insult to both the ancestral spirits and the long yam spirits if the long yam was adorned with a dirty, unpainted yam mask. Ex Michael Hamson.

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