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Cap Crest Mask (Idiok Ekpo)

Artist/Maker: Ibibio people (Nigeria)

Date: not dated
Medium: wood, stain and pigment
Overall: 23 1/8 x 9 1/8 x 8 in. (58.7 x 23.2 x 20.3 cm)
Classification: Clothing, Accessories and Jewelry
Credit Line: Gift of Alan Potamkin
Object number: 2007.48.121
DescriptionThe Ibibio Ekpo Society uses threatening masks to reinforce social and moral conformity. This mask is not as grotesque as most of the Idiok Ekpo (evil ghosts) category to which it belongs. Yet it does have all the essential ingredients. It is large, dark, has threatening horns and most of all, a huge mouth open to expose fang-like incisors. Instead of separate eyebrows, there is one long brow arching across the forehead in a way that almost suggests the head ring worn by titled elders of the highest grade of Ekpo. The naturalistic carving of the cheeks and nose suggest that this may be from the Anang Ibibio area famous for its realistic style.
Not on view
In Collection(s)