Mask

A work made of wood and rubber.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of wood and rubber.

Date:

Late 19th century

Artist:

Sha or Kulere
Nigeria
Coastal West Africa

About this artwork

This strikingly abstract mask was once covered with potent red abrus seeds that were held in place by a resin paste. It would have been used in initiation rituals for one of six age-grade associations. Among the Sha people, a mask like this one represents a male spirit called Akirang who had a female counterpart named Aja. The Kulere equivalent of Akirang was Asho, a spirit associated with human and agricultural fertility.

On View

Arts of Africa, Gallery 137

Artist

Sha

Title

Mask

Origin

Nigeria

Date

1867–1900

Medium

Wood and rubber

Dimensions

H. 64.8 cm (25 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Richard Faletti, the Faletti Family Collection

Reference Number

2000.319

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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