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Fiber Mask with Conical Eyes (Batwape)

Arts of Africa

MEDIUM Burlap, wood, hide, cotton fiber, feathers, seeds, cowrie shells, pigment
DATES late 19th or early 20th century
DIMENSIONS 28 1/2 x 11 x 12 in. (72.4 x 28.0 x 30.5 cm)  (show scale)
COLLECTIONS Arts of Africa
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CREDIT LINE Gift of Marcia and John Friede
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CAPTION Luntu. Fiber Mask with Conical Eyes (Batwape), late 19th or early 20th century. Burlap, wood, hide, cotton fiber, feathers, seeds, cowrie shells, pigment, 28 1/2 x 11 x 12 in. (72.4 x 28.0 x 30.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Marcia and John Friede, 74.121.3. Creative Commons-BY
IMAGE front, CUR.74.121.3_front_PS5.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2012
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Mask composed of burlap covering a wooden face-wooden cone shaped eyes and nose protrude through the burlap. On the top of the head and above the eyes, pieces of hide have been sewn with string to the burlap. Extending vertically from the top of the head are brown and beige feathers. Eight cowrie shells decorate forehead, and red seeds decorate area on either side of nose. There are traces of white paint inside eyes. Cloth has been stitched to indicate mouth. Base of mask decorated with raffia. A long narrow strip of hide is attached to the back of the mask. Condition: Group of feathers on right side of head loose, raffia shedding, hide decoration brittle. Mask rests on modern metal stand with ring at top.
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