The first mask is a wooden shaman mask.
Good condition, nice shine. The mask was probably made by the shaman himself, who used it in various nocturnal rituals, both for protection and for casting out evil spirits.
Dimensions: 27 cm x 13 cm
The second mask is a Ritual Lingzhi Fungus Mask, Nepal, probably late 20th century.
This extraordinary mask has been formed from a large, single Lingzhi fungus (Ganoderma Lucidum). The natural structure of the fungus has been coaxed into forming a nose, ears, a mouth and eyes. Two holes on either side allow for a natural twine to have been threaded through so that the mask can be either worn or hung for (perhaps) ritual display. The surface is hard, glossy and dramatically wrinkled. It is believed that such masks were worn ritually to frighten off malevolent spirits. Most extant fungus masks are of black (or blackened) Lingzhi fungus. Pannier (2009, p. 68) illustrates a mask translated as a ‘mushroom’ mask which appears to be made from a single fungus, possibly a Lingzhi. Nepalese fungus masks are rare. Dating them is difficult. There are few in private or museum collections. The example here is in an excellent, stable condition with just the odd small loss to the extremities as might be expected. The texture is hard and robust rather than crumbly and friable. It has a wood-like consistency.
Dimensions: 21 x 21 x 10 cm
References: Pannier, F. (ed.), Masks of the Himalayas, 5 Continents, 2009.
From an old Dutch school collection.
- Total nr of items
- Shaman masks
- Mushroom, Wood
- Late 20th century
- Region/ Country of origin
- Good condition, see description
- 27×21×9 cm