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Mask (lipiko)

Arts of Africa

Lipiko masks are used by the Makonde at boys’ and girls’ initiation ceremonies to represent spirits. The masks are noteworthy for their realism, each depicting details of a particular facial type and hairstyle. Lipiko masks are often caricatures representing members of neighboring groups, religious leaders, and colonial officials.
CULTURE Makonde artist
MEDIUM Wood, human hair, fiber, pigment
DATES 19th century
DIMENSIONS 13 x 10 1/4 x 11 1/4 in. (33 x 26 x 28.6 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
CREDIT LINE Museum Expedition 1922, Robert B. Woodward Memorial Fund
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Wooden mask, helmet type of heroic size. Soft wood colored a brick-red shade. Human hair (probably) fixed to the top head, beard attached to chin. Protruding lips, flattened nose, rounded forehead. Ears carved into fan-like shapes.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Makonde artist. Mask (lipiko), 19th century. Wood, human hair, fiber, pigment, 13 x 10 1/4 x 11 1/4 in. (33 x 26 x 28.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Museum Expedition 1922, Robert B. Woodward Memorial Fund, 22.1588. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 22.1588_front_SL1.jpg)
IMAGE front, 22.1588_front_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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