“Great Face” Mask


Museo Nacional de Antropología, Madrid

Museo Nacional de Antropología, Madrid
Madrid, Spain

The Tapirapé men wore masks like this one during the Tawa festival at the end of June, when they acted out the victories of the Tapirapé over their enemies. These masks represent the spirits of their enemies; the Kayapo and Karajá. The feathers surrounding the mask are the spirit's headdress. These masks are made by women, which is unusual as feathered objects were usually made by men, especially if they were to be worn by them.


  • Title: “Great Face” Mask
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 1950/1991
  • Physical Dimensions: w79 x h95 x d20 cm
  • Type: Featherwork
  • External Link: CERES
  • Materials: Feathers, wood, vegetable fiber, cotton, mother-of-pearl, shells, wax.
  • Cultural Context: Tapirapé (Amazon area), Brazil

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