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Bruce Frank Primitive Art
New York City, NY
+1 917 733 9589

Flute Mask

East Sepik or Madang Province,
Sepik-Ramu estuary, Papua New Guinea
19th Century

Provenance: Old American collection, acquired in the 1980’s

These small masks were strung to sacred flutes to add to their efficacy. This example was carved with non-metal tools; and has developed an encrusted patina with an overall surface of red ochre. This great little mask has all the aspects of an early example; classic style; with pierced septum and ears.  The back of the mask shows delicate markings most likely from a sea shell. Non-metal tools were not limited to just stones – shells and teeth were also used to carve intricate designs such as the ones on the forehead of this mask.

Flute Mask

East Sepik or Madang Province,
Sepik-Ramu estuary, Papua New Guinea
19th Century

Provenance: Old American collection, acquired in the 1980’s

These small masks were strung to sacred flutes to add to their efficacy. This example was carved with non-metal tools; and has developed an encrusted patina with an overall surface of red ochre. This great little mask has all the aspects of an early example; classic style; with pierced septum and ears.  The back of the mask shows delicate markings most likely from a sea shell. Non-metal tools were not limited to just stones – shells and teeth were also used to carve intricate designs such as the ones on the forehead of this mask.

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