Powerful Mwai Ancestor Spirit Mask, Tambanum, PNG, Papua New Guinea, Oceanic
To see more fine oceanic artefacts. Field collected, this is a wonderful Mythical Carved and Painted Ancestor Mwai Spirit Mask from the Tambanum Village, Middle Sepik Region of Papua New Guinea. Mwai masks represent clan ancestors; they are kept in the house of the clan elder and carried by newly-initiated young men at dances. Mai (or mwai) masks, represented as pairs of mythical brothers and sisters, are the teachers in the young men's initiation ceremonies. Mai masks represent the spirits of totemic names. Names are very sacred in PNG. No one actually says anyone's real name, including their own, for fear of drawing the attention of bad spirits or sorcerers. During initiations, the elder who wears the mai mask becomes a spirit teacher who may say the important totemic names without evoking personal risk. He tells and calls out names for use in magic, for healing and for other spiritual uses. These names number in the thousands and only powerful men have this knowledge.
The primary focus of artistic expression is the men's ceremonial house. Masks, Statues and figures are usually decorated with carved ancestral spirit faces. Pre post weight 1.2 kg.
This is not always possible given the sizes and unique packing requirements for each unique piece. Can also insure package if required. STANDS ARE NOT INCLUDED WITH ANY ITEM.
Pictures make up part of the description. The item "Powerful Mwai Ancestor Spirit Mask, Tambanum, PNG, Papua New Guinea, Oceanic" is in sale since Monday, July 27, 2020. This item is in the category "Antiques\Ethnographic\Pacific Islands & Oceania". The seller is "bubble_artefacts" and is located in Wurtulla, QLD. This item can be shipped worldwide.
- Material: Wood
- Original/Reproduction: Original
- Provenance: Tambanum
- Product Type: Masks
- Originating Region: Papua New Guinea