Eye-catching Idoma Head Crest Mask 23″ – Nigeria – African Art


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This is an eye-catching reproduction of a well known head crest mask hand carved by the Idoma People. This mask has two heads that are double faced that are each covered in kaolin. This piece stands 23 inches tall and weighs 8.5 pounds. There are stable age cracks through-out this piece but it is fully intact.

Type of Object

Head Crest Mask/Figure

Country of Origin





Wood, Pigment

Approximate Age


Height (Inches)


Width (Inches)


Depth (Inches)


Weight (Pounds)

8.5 lbs

Overall Condition

Possible minor imperfections and wear & tear, including but not limited to scuffing, cracking and minimal chipping. Possible previous repairs. See photos or inquire for more details.


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Tribe Information

About the Idoma People

“The people living on the banks of the Niger and Benue Rivers share many social and artistic traditions. They are thought to have common ancestors known as the Akpoko people. Traditionally, they principally make their money by acting as trade intermediaries between the inland people and the people who inhabit the Niger River Delta.
Living at the confluence of the Benue and Niger Rivers, the 500,000 Idoma people are predominantly farmers and traders. Artistically, they have achieved a reputation for their female fecundity figures showing an open mouth with carved teeth and vertical keloids on the temples. The face is usually painted with white pigments – a stylistic characteristic also shared with the Igbo people.

Baquart, Jean-Baptiste. The Tribal Arts of Africa. New York: Thames and Hudson Inc. 1998. Print.

Additional Information

About Idoma Figures

“At least two types of female figure can be distinguished. The first, known as the Anjenu, is used during fertility cults and is revered in small shrines. Once a year they are worn by dancers and paraded through the village. The second type, called Ekwotame, is carved as a seated woman and may be painted with black pigments. These figures represent ancestors and thus the idea of lineage, so they are set near the body of the deceased.”

About Idoma Masks

“Face masks, called Okwa, are generally found among the southern Idoma people. They are worn by dancers during funerals and display typical keloids, an open mouth and a smooth coiffure.
Headdresses with a conical base supporting a round human head and helmet mask belong to the Oglinye society. Nowadays, however, it retains only the idea that its members are strong and courageous. Janus or multi-headed headdress also exist and are used during entertainment festivities and funerals.”