This a fabulous large woven natural pigment Abelam Yam Mask from the Abelam Tribe of the East Sepik in Papua New Guinea. A Yam mask such as this would have been placed with yam masks while on display for the ceremonial exchange of the village’s largest yams, and are made exclusively to adorn long yams grown for exchange and social status. Lavishly adorned for the presentation ceremony, the finest long yams are essentially transformed into human images, decorated in the manner of men in full ceremonial regalia. The large decorated yams are believed to be live embodiment's of the ancestors and the masks play a central role in representing the spiritual beings. Power and status are directly related to the size of the yam and gender. Men weave the yam masks with human and animal characteristics and then typically cover them with clay pigment and dyes. A masterful weaver will produce a mask that is tightly woven, clear in form and idea and that has a visual presence that easily conveys the spirit of the ancestor. The application of paint animates the finished mask; paint is the trans-formative ingredient that changes the status of the mask from an inanimate thing to living spirit. This is a beautiful yam mask to adorn your home or add to your collection.
Show Natural Age and Wear
26 Inches Tall
9.5 Inches Wide
9 Inches Deep
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