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Igbo Appliqued Dance Costume with Cloth Mask Nigeria African Art

Regular Price: $1,199.00

Special Price: $750.00

Product #: 104330
US Shipping: $49.98
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Title Igbo Appliqued Dance Costume with Cloth Mask Nigeria African Art
Type of Object Costume/Mask
Country of Origin Nigeria
People Igbo
Materials wood, cloth, vegetal fiber
Approximate Age Mid 20th century
Dimensions Height: 85 Inches
Width: 87 Inches
Overall Condition Good. Most of our pieces have spent decades on at least two continents, and have been treasured by several owners.   Small splits, scrapes and cracks are a normal part of their patina attesting to their age and extensive use.  We examine each piece carefully when we receive it and report any damage we find in our listings.  Please look carefully at the pictures which may also reveal condition and damage.
Damage/Repair tears, stains and discoloration; see pictures for details


Additional Information:   This wonderful costume comes from the Igbo (north central) and represents the 'Beautiful Maiden'. The 'beautiful maiden' mask symbolizes the idealization of the beauty and virtue of young girls as they are introduced into society. Well dressed, beautifully coiffed, they are the pride of their father's eye. They dance to honor senior deities, to entertain and to instruct as well as funerals or to celebrate senior elders. Danced by mature men, late 20's to 40's-50's. Refined gestures and graceful dances. The bright patterns of the full body costume represent the patterns of body paintings called uli.


This costume is completed with a fabric mask in red. In some cases, a wooden mask would be used with such costume. These masks also represent a delicate beauty and feminine essence. Men of middle rank in the secret society would dance with these masks, known as "Agbogho Mmwo." They would dance at the beginning of the dry season and at funerals with their elaborate burial ceremonies. The Beautiful Maiden Masks will appear singly or as pairs in dances emulating women doing their everyday activities; farming, going to market, etc. The costumes are always colorful, made up of varied colored cloth appliqués and detailed design patterns.


See photo of dancers wearing such  costume in Picton and Mack's AFRICAN TEXTILES.