Shamans Dance Mask
Iban Dayak, Borneo, Indonesia, early 20th C.
PROVENANCE: Louis Wells, Boston. Old label on the back: "Suku Iban Batang Lupar Kabupatan: Melapi Hulu".

Contemporary masks from the Iban, in Borneo, are relatively common today on the tourist market, as their active use in Iban culture has deteriorated. However, older masks, like this one are very rare. Most of the masks are crudely carved and used in dancing rituals. This particular mask, on the contrary, is finely carved and displays a wonderful differentiation in color. Although the deeply curved brows combined with the large eyes and nose give off a commanding expression, the carved lines of the mask flow easily together creating a cohesive, almost portrait-like appearance.

Height: 9.5 in. high.
IN 9-8-13 / SOLD