Tribal art > African mask > Tatanua Mask
Traditional mask of large Tatanua type, from the north of the island of New Ireland, in Papua New Guinea, Oceania. It was used as part of Malagan rites, commemoration of the dead, or for semi-secular ceremonies. This type of mask was not necessarily worn, but exhibited.
Framed by pendant earrings, the face, of great expressive force, offers an immense toothed mouth developing under largely hollowed features. The impressive crest is based on a wicker frame, sheathed in skin or canvas, on which, emphasizing a raffia crest, a network of raffia mats are artfully arranged. The hairstyle refers to that, partially shaved, of young boys during the period of mourning. A matte polychrome paint comes in various patterns on the surface of the mask, contributing to the visual effect.
Small alterations ...