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A Superb Old New Guinea Mask Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papua New Guinea

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Collection No. TB-1570
Size Height: 43cm Width: 18cm
New Guinea Oceanic Art
Abelam New Guinea Art
New Guinea & Oceanic Art
Asian Buddhist Art

A Superb Old New Guinea Mask Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papua New Guinea This old and well-used Mask dates from the early 20th Century

Powerful Brag masks like this example were only danced on rare occasions, including the initiation of young males and at times of scarce food and other village hardships. Each individual mask was known by a unique name and was danced by an initiated male concealed in a plant fiber costume covering the whole body of the dancer. The dancer becomes the powerful spirit for the time it is being danced. This finely carved mask with layers of ochre-painted decoration has left an encrusted patina from decades of use.  The nose is carved to represent the concentric shell nose decorations that were worn by men in the 19th Century.  The back of the mask shows the real age & use of traditional tools like a shell rasp.

In the Sepik River area people’s ceremonial & spiritual life revolves around masks, usually, dance masks worn by a select person but also large masks for the gables or windows of the monumental Ceremonial Haus Tambaran or Men’s Ceremonial House where all the important rituals & initiations take place and where scared objects like masks are stored and venerated.

Provenance: Old Collection Australia The Todd Barlin Collection of New GUinea Oceanic Art

See all of the links & photos in my new EXHIBITIONS GALLERY  showing the Museums & Art Gallery Exhibitions that I provided artworks for over the past 40 years. There is the link to the article about my artworks published in the prestigious Louvre Magazine in 1996

I have artwork for Museums and art Galleries but also for collectors at every stage of their collecting. I want to encourage people to explore the fine art of New Guinea & West Papua and the Pacific Islands and to be able to see and touch the artworks in a relaxed and friendly manner in my Sydney Gallery. I would like to invite you to visit my gallery and see the artworks in person and also look at my website www.oceanicartsaustralia.com where there are many Galleries & Sub Galleries to explore.

My Gallery of nearly 40 years is the last physical gallery in Sydney that specializes in New Guinea and Oceanic Art.  Sydney is very close to New Guinea & the Pacific Islands where all of these amazing artworks came from, Australia’s closest neighbors.


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