Mask, c. 1950
Wood, fiber, hair (?)
34 1/4 x 41 1/2 x 15 in. (87 x 105.41 x 38.1 cm)
On loan from Brahima Wague, Sugar Land, Texas L2010.127
“Mystery Mask” is currently on view in gallery 261a. This minimal installation features a single object: a highly unusual 3 ½ foot tall mask from Nigeria about which very little is known. The mask is carved from wood, colored with pigments, and the moustache is composed of fiber and possibly hair. It dates to the middle of the twentieth century.
The curator is inviting comments about its origin and function from scholars worldwide through an African scholars Internet forum.
As comments come in, they will be added to the didactics in the gallery and posted on The Bubbler, creating a participatory exhibition. The exhibition runs through December 18.
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