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Igbo Costume Appliqued with Maw Mask African Art

Regular Price: $950.00

Special Price: $850.00

Product #: 100402
US Shipping: $31.98
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Title Igbo Costume Appliqued with Maw Mask Africa
Type of Object Costume/Mask
Country of Origin Nigeria
People Igbo
Materials wood, cloth, vegetal fiber
Approximate Age Mid 20th century
Dimensions 56 inches tall x 56 inches wrist to wrist
Overall Condition good
Damage/Repair tears in mask, stains and discoloration, torn stitches


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. On the top, a conical form as a hairdo. 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.