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Need help with identifying a mask

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  • Cathy
    I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in Africa when she was a young
    Message 1 of 16 , Oct 19, 2008
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      I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
      German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
      Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
      and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
      good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
      resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
      liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
      I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
      it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
      tribe.

      This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
      from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
      teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
      carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
      nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
      red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
      mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
      diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
      and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
      rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
      painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
      lots of carving marks evident.
      Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
      will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
      bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
      my description here!

      http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/8376?b=1&m=t
    • Cathy Davis
      I think it s an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you ll find lots of references on the internet. Cathy 2008/10/19 Cathy
      Message 2 of 16 , Oct 19, 2008
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        I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you'll find lots of references on the internet.
        Cathy

        2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@...>

        I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
        German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
        Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
        and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
        good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
        resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
        liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
        I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
        it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
        tribe.

        This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
        from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
        teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
        carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
        nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
        red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
        mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
        diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
        and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
        rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
        painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
        lots of carving marks evident.
        Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
        will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
        bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
        my description here!

        http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/8376?b=1&m=t




        --
        Cathy Davis
        Thermes-Magnoac
      • Ed Jones
        Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).   Ed ... From: Cathy
        Message 3 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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          Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).
           
          Ed

          --- On Sun, 10/19/08, Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@...> wrote:
          From: Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@...>
          Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
          To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
          Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008, 10:51 PM

          I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you'll find lots of references on the internet.
          Cathy

          2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@comcast. net>
          I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
          German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
          Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
          and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
          good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
          resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
          liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
          I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
          it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
          tribe.

          This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
          from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
          teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
          carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
          nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
          red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
          mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
          diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
          and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
          rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
          painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
          lots of carving marks evident.
          Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
          will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
          bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
          my description here!

          http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t



          --
          Cathy Davis
          Thermes-Magnoac

          __________________________________________________
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        • Cathy Davis
          The Eket people have lots of workshops for the African Art market but do generally follow variations on a theme when it comes to the moon masks. I expect
          Message 4 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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            The Eket people have lots of workshops for the African Art market but do generally follow variations on a theme when it comes to the moon masks. I expect because the style fits well into any western home they have been widely copied elsewhere. This one hasn't been aged by hours of rubbing to eliminate the tooling marks or the newly painted look and they haven't bothered putting in a well chewed bite bar or spent hours wearing away holes to multisize them with a piece of rope but that doesn't detract from being able to enjoy a cheerful piece of sculpture!

            2008/10/20 Ed Jones <bucit@...>

            Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).
             
            Ed

            --- On Sun, 10/19/08, Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@...> wrote:
            From: Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@...>
            Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
            To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
            Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008, 10:51 PM

            I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you'll find lots of references on the internet.
            Cathy

            2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@comcast. net>
            I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
            German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
            Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
            and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
            good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
            resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
            liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
            I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
            it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
            tribe.

            This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
            from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
            teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
            carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
            nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
            red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
            mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
            diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
            and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
            rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
            painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
            lots of carving marks evident.
            Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
            will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
            bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
            my description here!

            http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t



            --
            Cathy Davis
            Thermes-Magnoac

            __________________________________________________
            Do You Yahoo!?
            Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
            http://mail.yahoo.com




            --
            Cathy Davis
            Thermes-Magnoac
          • Veronique Martelliere
            Bonjour, Cathy The community called Eket (South-East of Nigeria) have, among other masks, round ones which are called masks of the light . One is the mask
            Message 5 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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              Bonjour, Cathy
              The community called "Eket" (South-East of Nigeria) have, among other masks, round ones which are called "masks of the light". One is the mask of the Moon (Ekong Ekpo) and the other one is the mask of the Sun (Mfon Ekpo).
              The one you show us is obviously a Mfon Ekpo. In style, anyway.
              Cheers
              Vero


              From: Cathy <allgaul@...>
              To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Sunday, October 19, 2008 11:04:50 PM
              Subject: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

              I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
              German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
              Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
              and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
              good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
              resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
              liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
              I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
              it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
              tribe.

              This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
              from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
              teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
              carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
              nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
              red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
              mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
              diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
              and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
              rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
              painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
              lots of carving marks evident.
              Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
              will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
              bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
              my description here!

              http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t


              __________________________________________________
              Do You Yahoo!?
              Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
              http://mail.yahoo.com
            • Cathy
              ... Nigeria, ... Thank you SO much to all who responded. I looked for a long time but had no frame of reference as to where to start-tried all kinds of google
              Message 6 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                --- In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, "Cathy Davis" <cathywinsor@...>
                wrote:
                >
                > I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of
                Nigeria,
                > you'll find lots of references on the internet.
                > Cathy
                >
                >

                Thank you SO much to all who responded. I looked for a long time but
                had no frame of reference as to where to start-tried all kinds of
                google searches, but now I can go do proper searching!
                Thanks!
              • Cathy
                Yes, now I see that this surely is not an old piece and probably not authentic, but I have a nice example to show my art classes and context to explain it as
                Message 7 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                  Yes, now I see that this surely is not an old piece and probably not
                  authentic, but I have a nice example to show my art classes and context
                  to explain it as well!
                  Thanks for the help, again.



                  In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, "Cathy Davis" <cathywinsor@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > The Eket people have lots of workshops for the African Art market but
                  do
                  > generally follow variations on a theme when it comes to the moon
                  > masks. I expect because the style fits well into any western home
                  they have
                  > been widely copied elsewhere. This one hasn't been aged by hours of
                  rubbing
                  > to eliminate the tooling marks or the newly painted look and they
                  haven't
                  > bothered putting in a well chewed bite bar or spent hours wearing
                  away holes
                  > to multisize them with a piece of rope but that doesn't detract from
                  being
                  > able to enjoy a cheerful piece of sculpture!
                  >
                • MO OKDG
                  You re such a trouble maker. ... From: Ed Jones To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 9:28:50 AM Subject: Re:
                  Message 8 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                    You're such a trouble maker.

                    ----- Original Message ----
                    From: Ed Jones <bucit@...>
                    To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
                    Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 9:28:50 AM
                    Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

                    Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).
                     
                    Ed

                    --- On Sun, 10/19/08, Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com> wrote:
                    From: Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com>
                    Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                    To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                    Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008, 10:51 PM

                    I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you'll find lots of references on the internet.
                    Cathy

                    2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@comcast. net>
                    I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
                    German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
                    Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
                    and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
                    good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
                    resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
                    liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
                    I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
                    it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
                    tribe.

                    This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
                    from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
                    teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
                    carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
                    nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
                    red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
                    mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
                    diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
                    and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
                    rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
                    painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
                    lots of carving marks evident.
                    Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
                    will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
                    bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
                    my description here!

                    http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t



                    --
                    Cathy Davis
                    Thermes-Magnoac

                    ____________ _________ _________ _________ _________ __
                    Do You Yahoo!?
                    Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
                    http://mail. yahoo.com

                  • Lee Rubinstein
                    Cathy et al: I agree that the closest one can come to providing an attribution of style for your mask leads to reference to the Eket. Unfortunately, Eket
                    Message 9 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                      Cathy et al:

                      I agree that the closest one can come to providing an attribution of style for your mask leads to reference to the Eket.  Unfortunately, Eket cultural objects were little studied prior to the interest leading to the commercial sale of limited remaining examples in context and, thus, there is extremely limited explicatory material available.  Keith Nicklin and Jill Salmons describe the state of affairs pertaining to Eket Art in their 1980 review of François Neyt's L'Art Eket:  Collection Azar (Paris:  Abeille International, 1979), the only publication of which I am aware that focuses specifically on art of the Eket.  Nicklin and Salmons state:  "When working in southeast Nigeria in the 1970's, we conducted little fieldwork in Eket due to the paucity of artworks remaining there.  In the village where pieces similar in quality to those in the Azar collection were seen, it was admitted that nearly all the old works of art had been sold to Cameroonian traders..."  

                      For those who have access to the issue of this publication, the Nicklin-Salmons review article appears in African Arts Volume XIII, Number 2 (February 1980) on pages 24-27 and 83.   The review offers -- in addition to an outline of the fieldworkers whose research might be gleaned for references pertaining to Eket material culture -- a very insightful broader discussion of some pitfalls in the contemporary appropriation of ethnographic art objects wherein the indigenous truth of objects is heavily over-shadowed by commercial and other external interests of the collecting and curating communities.  For those who do not have access to the article, I include below this extended excerpt for consideration:

                      "Although Fr. Neyt's book is an important contribution to the literature available on this part of Africa, we feel compelled to explain why we were saddened by the appearance of the work.  There is no in-depth field-based study of Eket traditional art, and little possibility now exists of such a study ever being conducted.  Ironically, part of the reason for this is that in recent years Eket Ibibio art has entered the international art market and is currently in vogue.  Photographs of Eket pieces have been appearing in dealers' advertisements in Arts d'Afrique Noire since 1973.  Old specimens left in the field are very few and far between...  During much of the 1970s we have scavenged throughout southeast Nigeria in order to seize the last opportunity to establish the provenance of rare or hitherto unknown art styles, and to study them in context.  Fr. Neyt's text, excellent though it is, consists of a review of available literature, plus scraps of information that we were able to supply.

                      "We are seriously concerned about the trend away from studies based on fieldwork in African and toward the investigation of African art in overseas collections linked with skillful interpretation of the literature.  We are concerned that this approach be recognized for what it is:  sometimes the best that can be done in very regrettable circumstances.  This method can be used effectively with regard to a catalogue of of another major collection of Nigerian sculpture (Wittmer & Arnett* 1978), in which the authors combine a knowledge of secondary sources with a careful stylistic correlation and inspired guesswork.  

                      Other approaches are possible.  That of Jacqueline Fry (1978**) incorporates the field material of scholars who have worked among specific groups and are thus able to write about the pieces in the collection or exhibition with authority.  Some catalogues, however, seek to dramatize and add monetary value to pieces, with little or no regard for other considerations.  A catalogue of masks from the Cross River region of Nigeria/Cameroon is poetically entitles Les "Duen-Fubara"*** (1976) -- a name describing the ancestral screens of the Niger Delta and having no connection with the artworks illustrated.  

                      In conclusion, we would say that on account of the unfortunate removal to the sophisticated circles of Paris, Brussels, London and New York of so much traditional African art before detailed field studies have been conducted, the current spate of catalogues written by authors who have not visited the areas they describe probably represents a trend that will eventually lead to this being virtually the only form of study possible.  The increasing tendency for collectors and dealers to sponsor academics to write about their collections is in one fundamental sense self-defeating, since the building of the collections is helping to destroy all possibility of explanation of the pieces."  (p.83)

                      Writing nearly 30 years ago, Nicklin and Salmons did, I think, provide a fairly accurate future vision of the trend that has led us to where we stand today.  The proliferation of circulating works in a void of collection data has led to the presentation of works anchored (only tentatively) by references to the class of objects to which they can be linked thematically or stylistically as a means of suggesting that the pairing of objects with references constitutes the direct applicability of the description to the work presented. It is perhaps as close as we can often come but we should not misconstrue identification of the requisite elements for classification as the firm bases for authentication.  The reliance upon secondary (and further-removed) sources by collectors, curators, dealers and virtual authors [myself included, of course] to give life and context to a piece removed from its place of origin has moved us into a realm of plausibility rather than a field of certainty;  and we must recognize the leaps of faith, the pending uncertainties and factors external to objective analysis which contribute to the consideration, authentication and valuation of ethnographic works in both commercial and non-commercial contexts. Ultimately we must each be prudent in the vetting of objects and the sources upon which we draw for our own assessments of the authenticity and value of objects while also recognizing how we -- as collectors and enthusiasts pressuring the displacement of objects -- may impact negatively upon our own ability to have a clear perception of the objects to which we are drawn and which we seek to appreciate and understand...  

                      Lee  

                      Note:  Works referenced in the Nicklin-Salmons excerpt above include:
                      Three Rivers of Nigeria: Art of the Lower Niger, Cross and Benue From the Collection of William and Robert Arnett (Atlanta:  High Museum of Art 1978).
                      ** Vingt-cinq sculptures africaines/Twenty-five African sculptures (Ottowa:  Galerie nationale du Canada 1978).
                      *** Hélene Kamer, Les "Duen-Fubara" (Paris:  Galerie Kamer 1976).

                      On Oct 20, 2008, at 12:03 PM, Cathy wrote:

                      Yes, now I see that this surely is not an old piece and probably not 
                      authentic, but I have a nice example to show my art classes and context 
                      to explain it as well! 
                      Thanks for the help, again.

                      In African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com, "Cathy Davis" <cathywinsor@ ...> wrote:
                      >
                      > The Eket people have lots of workshops for the African Art market but 
                      do
                      > generally follow variations on a theme when it comes to the moon
                      > masks. I expect because the style fits well into any western home 
                      they have
                      > been widely copied elsewhere. This one hasn't been aged by hours of 
                      rubbing
                      > to eliminate the tooling marks or the newly painted look and they 
                      haven't
                      > bothered putting in a well chewed bite bar or spent hours wearing 
                      away holes
                      > to multisize them with a piece of rope but that doesn't detract from 
                      being
                      > able to enjoy a cheerful piece of sculpture!
                      > 


                    • Ed Jones
                      Trouble making is relative , as the information concerning this mask is. ... From: MO OKDG Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with
                      Message 10 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                        Trouble making is "relative", as the information concerning this mask is.

                        --- On Mon, 10/20/08, MO OKDG <okdg@...> wrote:
                        From: MO OKDG <okdg@...>
                        Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                        To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
                        Date: Monday, October 20, 2008, 10:24 AM

                        You're such a trouble maker.

                        ----- Original Message ----
                        From: Ed Jones <bucit@yahoo. com>
                        To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                        Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 9:28:50 AM
                        Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

                        Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).
                         
                        Ed

                        --- On Sun, 10/19/08, Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com> wrote:
                        From: Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com>
                        Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                        To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                        Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008, 10:51 PM

                        I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria, you'll find lots of references on the internet.
                        Cathy

                        2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@comcast. net>
                        I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
                        German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
                        Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
                        and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
                        good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
                        resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
                        liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
                        I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
                        it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
                        tribe.

                        This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
                        from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
                        teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
                        carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
                        nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
                        red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
                        mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
                        diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
                        and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
                        rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
                        painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
                        lots of carving marks evident.
                        Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
                        will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
                        bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
                        my description here!

                        http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t



                        --
                        Cathy Davis
                        Thermes-Magnoac

                        ____________ _________ _________ _________ _________ __
                        Do You Yahoo!?
                        Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
                        http://mail. yahoo.com

                        __________________________________________________
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                      • woolygums
                        Ed Jones has made two very good points. _____ From: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com [mailto:African_Arts@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ed Jones Sent: Monday,
                        Message 11 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                          Ed Jones has made two very good points.

                           


                          From: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com [mailto:African_Arts@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ed Jones
                          Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 5:00 PM
                          To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

                           

                          Trouble making is "relative", as the information concerning this mask is.

                          --- On Mon, 10/20/08, MO OKDG <okdg@prodigy. net> wrote:

                          From: MO OKDG <okdg@prodigy. net>
                          Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                          To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                          Date: Monday, October 20, 2008, 10:24 AM

                          You're such a trouble maker.

                           

                          ----- Original Message ----
                          From: Ed Jones <bucit@yahoo. com>
                          To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                          Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 9:28:50 AM
                          Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

                          Hmmn... then again, it might also be a tourist carved piece (similiar to what is sold in Pier 1 or Cost Plus World market, or anywhere).

                           

                          Ed

                          --- On Sun, 10/19/08, Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com> wrote:

                          From: Cathy Davis <cathywinsor@ gmail.com>
                          Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                          To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                          Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008, 10:51 PM

                          I think it's an Eket moon mask, from the Southern Ibibio people of Nigeria , you'll find lots of references on the internet.

                          Cathy

                          2008/10/19 Cathy <allgaul@comcast. net>

                          I bought a carved and painted wooden African mask from an elderly
                          German woman today at a flea market. She had spent a few years in
                          Africa when she was a young woman, her memory was pretty much gone
                          and her daughter was selling off her collection of various pieces of
                          good stuff and junk. I liked it because it will be a great visual
                          resource for my art classes when we do African mask projects, but I
                          liked it alot because of the shape and colors and simplicity as well.
                          I really should have some info about which tribe it came from and
                          it's use-or if it is an imitation and not culturally significant to a
                          tribe.

                          This mask is an inverted bowl shaped. It has 5 'rays' extending out
                          from the edge of the face. They are painted a dark blue. The eyes are
                          teardrop shaped with the points extending horizontal and they are
                          carved in a convex way off the surface of the face area as is the
                          nose and area around the mouth. The face itself is painted a brick
                          red. Between the rays are carved concentric lines to the edge of the
                          mask. The eyes are horizontal rectangular holes, the mouth is a
                          diamond shaped elongated horizontal. The eyebrows are heavy ridges
                          and the nose is a triangle connected to the eyebrows and between the
                          rounded part of the eyes. The rays, eyes, nostrils and face are
                          painted, the rest is wood. On the back it looks like a bowl, with
                          lots of carving marks evident.
                          Does this sound like any particular tribe to any of you experts? I
                          will post a photo and it will be labeled under cgull101 or inverted
                          bowl mask as a label- and I know that would be of much more help than
                          my description here!

                          http://ph.groups. yahoo.com/ group/African_ Arts/photos/ browse/8376? b=1&m=t




                          --
                          Cathy Davis
                          Thermes-Magnoac


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                        • Cathy Gaul
                          Your sarcasm-what s up with that?
                          Message 12 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                            Your sarcasm-what's up with that?
                             
                          • Ed Jones
                            I suppose that this is directed at me for expressing my opinion.   There was nothing stated which was cutting, ironic, or intended to inflict a wound . 
                            Message 13 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                              I suppose that this is directed at me for expressing my opinion.
                               
                              There was nothing stated which was "cutting, ironic, or intended to inflict a wound".  Perhaps, you simply do not like my thoughts about your mask (I can accept that).
                              Please do not make it anything otherwise... objectively, you asked, and I responded about the mask, and now I am questioned (subjectively) about offering a relative opinion.
                               
                              Simply enough, maybe, the points made were apparently too direct and offered a different perspective than you were seeking.  There was no canard. 
                               
                              Ed
                               
                              --- On Mon, 10/20/08, Cathy Gaul <allgaul@...> wrote:
                              From: Cathy Gaul <allgaul@...>
                              Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                              To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
                              Date: Monday, October 20, 2008, 4:42 PM

                              Your sarcasm-what' s up with that?
                               

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                            • MO OKDG
                              I was being sarcastic when I said he is a trouble maker. Of course the issue he is raising is intriguing, to say the least. His point combines insight with
                              Message 14 of 16 , Oct 20, 2008
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                                I was being sarcastic when I said he is a trouble maker. Of course the issue he is raising is intriguing, to say the least. His point combines insight with caution. Who wants to disagree with that!

                                ----- Original Message ----
                                From: Ed Jones <bucit@...>
                                To: African_Arts@yahoogroups.com
                                Sent: Monday, October 20, 2008 9:51:48 PM
                                Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask

                                I suppose that this is directed at me for expressing my opinion.
                                 
                                There was nothing stated which was "cutting, ironic, or intended to inflict a wound".  Perhaps, you simply do not like my thoughts about your mask (I can accept that).
                                Please do not make it anything otherwise... objectively, you asked, and I responded about the mask, and now I am questioned (subjectively) about offering a relative opinion.
                                 
                                Simply enough, maybe, the points made were apparently too direct and offered a different perspective than you were seeking.  There was no canard. 
                                 
                                Ed
                                 
                                --- On Mon, 10/20/08, Cathy Gaul <allgaul@comcast. net> wrote:
                                From: Cathy Gaul <allgaul@comcast. net>
                                Subject: Re: [African_Arts] Need help with identifying a mask
                                To: African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com
                                Date: Monday, October 20, 2008, 4:42 PM

                                Your sarcasm-what' s up with that?
                                 

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                              • Lee Rubinstein
                                Back to the topic of masks generally classified as Eket... One comparative example appears in the Barbier-Mueller collection [see Hahner-Herzog et al, African
                                Message 15 of 16 , Oct 21, 2008
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                                  Back to the topic of masks generally classified as Eket...

                                  One comparative example appears in the Barbier-Mueller collection [see Hahner-Herzog et al, African Masks from the Barbier-Mueller Collection, (Munich and New York:  Prestel 1998,  Pl. 52) or  http://www.barbier-mueller.ch/collections.html... Masque 15, 7th from the bottom of the first column of the list of Masques africains.]  Worth noting is that in the description of the mask which appears in the book, there is an indication that such masks -- attributed here to the southern Ibibio/Eket -- have also been observed decades apart both by Kenneth Murray (presumably late 40's) and by Nicklin and Salmons (70's?  80's?) among the neigboring Oron and Okobo.  "In the Eket region the mask seems to be associated mainly with performances called abubom.  With the Oron and Okobo, in contrast, it is used by the exclusive Ekong association, which is known for the impressive masked dance spectacles it stages for entertainment and for the elaborate funerals of its prosperous members." 

                                  The description continues:  "Salmons and Nicklin interpret the formal and ornamental elements of this and comparable masks as lunar symbols, seeing as the Eket are familiar with a corresponding symbolism, expressed in a connection between the female creation divinity, or "Great Mother" (eka abbassi), and the moon.  The circular shape of the mask would accordingly represent the full moon, while the shape of the eyes and the arc segments would suggest the new moon."

                                  Another example appears in the collection of the Musée Dapper:




                                • Ann Porteus
                                  Cathy, Do you think that a visit to a local gallery or museum and a comparative study of the differences between the old used and traditional art from Africa
                                  Message 16 of 16 , Oct 21, 2008
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                                    Cathy, 
                                    Do you think that a visit to a local gallery or museum and a comparative study of the differences between the old used and traditional art from Africa as opposed to recent reproductions could be a useful exercise for your students.
                                    Maybe they would like to see the changes which occur when African art is taken away from the significance of its traditional culture and changed by others to suit purely commercial purposes.
                                    We have regular groups visit us from infants school to Arts students from the local university. I like to think that they all benefit from the experience. It is great to see the little ones. We supply paper and pencils and sit them down on African seats with the piece that they each choose and encourage them to draw. Some of their studies and interpretations are amazing.
                                    ann

                                    On 21/10/2008, at 3:03 AM, Cathy wrote:

                                    Yes, now I see that this surely is not an old piece and probably not 
                                    authentic, but I have a nice example to show my art classes and context 
                                    to explain it as well! 
                                    Thanks for the help, again.

                                    In African_Arts@ yahoogroups. com, "Cathy Davis" <cathywinsor@ ...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > The Eket people have lots of workshops for the African Art market but 
                                    do
                                    > generally follow variations on a theme when it comes to the moon
                                    > masks. I expect because the style fits well into any western home 
                                    they have
                                    > been widely copied elsewhere. This one hasn't been aged by hours of 
                                    rubbing
                                    > to eliminate the tooling marks or the newly painted look and they 
                                    haven't
                                    > bothered putting in a well chewed bite bar or spent hours wearing 
                                    away holes
                                    > to multisize them with a piece of rope but that doesn't detract from 
                                    being
                                    > able to enjoy a cheerful piece of sculpture!
                                    > 


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