POWERFUL & DRAMATIC 

PAPUAN GULF ELEMA TAPA MASK COSTUME- (PUBLISHED)

Origin: New Guinea, gulf province, Papuan Gulf, Elema People      (Provenance:  Ex. collection of Ben Pickard- Oklahoma, Ex. Bruce Lawes 1980.  Published:  "Ritual, Power and Protection- Oceanic Art of the Sepik River and Papuan Gulf-  The Oklahoma Museum of Art", page 13)

Period/Date:  Published date 1960's (likely when collected)

Materials:  wood, rattan, bark cloth, feathers, raffia, lime, charcoal and Ocher pigments

Description:  It is incredibly rare to find a complete original "Keveke" dance costume like this!  This example is published in the exhibition catalog "Ritual, Power and Protection- Oceanic Art of the Sepik River and Papuan Gulf", Okalahoma Museum of Art, exhibited in 1981.  The catalog publication will be furnished to the buyer.  

I like how this one is like a mask within a mask.  Surrounding the eyes is a formation that looks like a bird and a mask at the same time having a powerful projecting beak-like mouth.   Inside the costume is a wood and rattan shoulder structure, allowing the dancer to slip it over head or alignment with the eyeholes.  Condition is overall outstanding and largely complete having all original pigments.  Most of its white feathers are now missing from around its medial ridge and perimeter,  other minor areas of loss, stains from wear and use.    It comes with a workable stand but a professionally fabricated one might be desired.

Dimensions:   Overall length w/ raffia 60"  (160 cm),  Mask Only:  Height 22.5" (57 cm) Width 13.5"  (34.5 cm) 

Price: $7800        Currency Conversion      FREE SHIPPING With (Buy Now) Feature!

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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