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Nemboro Toucan

Regular price €2.500

Extraordinary as works of art and decoration, these masks come from the Shamanic beliefs and rituals of the Central American Indians from the Wounaans and Emberas tribes. The Indians divide the world in two, a visible world and a parallel world which is invisible. The mask or "nemboro" allows the Shaman, during the ritual, to take on the appearance of a spirit from the invisible world and enter into communication with this world.

The masks are made from palm leaves harvested from the forest, from a variety of palm called the Chunga. The softer parts are removed first. They are dried, bleached and wound into skeins. The dried palm leaves are then dyed with natural dyes made from fruit pulp, wood chips, seeds, leaves or roots.

The artists who possess this traditional know-how are always women, with very few exceptions. They live in the rainforest with their families. At times, they weave while breastfeeding their babies. Sometimes a mask lays there, half finished, put down carefully while they prepare a meal, then go back to weaving a little later. And the work gradually progresses, the mask slowly takes shape amidst the duties of family life. The women are seldom found alone, and where they work is always a place full of conversations and laughter. Solitude has no place in the tribe.

Each artisan receives directly and immediately remuneration for her work, at a fair price.

Masks should not be exposed to rain. Likewise, direct exposure to the sun may cause the colors to fade.

  • l 77cm, w 41cm, d 28cm
  • each mask is unique
  • traditionally handmade from palm leaves
  • dyed with natural materials

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