Lot: 183

Anthropomorphic face mask

Nigeria, Eket

Provenance Size Hammer price
Roger F. Azar, Paris, France (1979)
Serge Le Guennan, Paris, France (2016)
H: 20.1 inch 5000 EUR

wood, black and red pigment, missing parts, base

This mask from the Azar collection is published in Neyt's standard work on the art of the Eket (Neyt, Paris 1979, fig. 25).

Neyt reports that such masks, which are crowned by anthropomorphic heads, figures or amphorae, were used in processions for agricultural festivals (Neyt, Paris 1979, p. 17).

A formally comparable mask is illustrated by Soldan (Soldan, 1986, p. 293, fig. 24 / AHDRC 0090124). However, nothing further seems to be known about the use of this type of mask. Nor do we know which organisation he once belonged to, the "ekpo", "idiong" or "ekong" secret society of men.

Soldan, Hans-Joerg, "Zur Frage des Kulturgutes der Eket", in: Baessler-Archiv, Neue Folge, Band XXXIV, Berlin 1986, p. 249-303
Neyt, Francois, "L'Art Eket, Collection Azar", Paris 1979, fig. 25 Exhibited:

Paris, France: "Parcours des Mondes", Galerie SL, 6-11 September 2016

ADHRC: 0135218