Collection Online
earth pigments on wood, beads, shell, mother-of-pearl, fibre
45.5 × 23.2 × 10.2 cm
Place/s of Execution
Yuat River, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea
Accession Number
Pacific Art
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through the NGV Foundation by Todd Barlin, Governor, 2005
© the artists
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of The Vizard Foundation
Gallery location
Not on display
Physical description
This Yuat River mask is characteristic of masks from the north coast of Papua New Guinea. This example, distinguished by perforation holes along the edge of the mask used to fasten dance costumes worn by dancers in ceremonies. These masks cover the face only while the cloaks made from fibre conceal the rest of the wearer's body. Such mask is part of an impressive dance costume, attached to a conical frame placed over the dancer's head, while a long fibre skirt conceals the body. In ceremonies performed in special ceremonial grounds, the dancers dance to the flickering lights of fire torches accompanied with drums. The dancer is thought to represent or impersonates a clan spirit.