Lot: 245

101st Auction

Anthropomorphic face mask "mfon ekpo" with horns

Nigeria, Ibibio

Provenance Size Starting price / estimated price
René and Maud Garcia, Paris, France H: 16.9 inch 1200 EUR
plus 27 % commission, VAT, transport and insurance

wood, base

The theme of duality, an underlying motif throughout the art of Africa, is demonstrated in many ways in the masking traditions of southeastern Nigeria. Its most obvious manifestation is found in Ibibio "ekpo" society masquerades.

Here, representations of unrestrained and dangerous dark spirits "idiok ekpo" of those who have died socially undesirable deaths are juxtaposed with the serene pale countenances of beneficial and revered spirits "mfon ekpo".