Detail View: The AMICA Library: Mask

AMICA ID: 
MMA_.1978.412.198
AMICA Library Year: 
2002
Object Type: 
Costume and Jewelry
Description: 
There was no tradition of portraiture at the great central Mexico city of Teotihuacan, but masks depicting the human face are abundant in the style associated with the site. With its geometrically rendered horizontal brow, triangular nose, and oval mouth and eyes, this mask depicts the idealized facial type that seems to function as a symbol, similar to other standardized motifs present in the art of Teotihuacan. The depressions of the eyes and the mouth suggest that this mask, like many of its counterparts, might have originally possessed inlaid shell or stone for the depiction of eyes and teeth. Although the mask is carved out of onyx marble, a precious stone, in its original state it may have been painted like other masks of this type. Perforations at the sides suggest that it was intended to be attached to another object, but given the weight of the stone and the lack of holes for the eyes and mouth, these masks were probably not worn by living people. Instead, they may have been attached to sculptures of human figures or mounted on mummy or deity bundles.
Creator Nationality: 
North American; Central American; Mesoamerican; Teotihuacán
Creator Name-CRT: 
Teotihuacan
Title: 
Mask
View: 
Principal view
Creation Date: 
3rd?7th century
Creation Start Date: 
200
Creation End Date: 
699
Materials and Techniques: 
Onyx marble
Creation Place: 
Mexico
Dimensions: 
H. 7 1/2 in. (19.1 cm)
AMICA Contributor: 
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: 
New York, New York
ID Number: 
1978.412.198
Credit Line: 
The Michael C. Rockefeller Memorial Collection, Purchase, Nelson A. Rockefeller Gift, 1969
Copyright: 
Copyright ? 2002 The Metropolitan Museum of Art. All rights reserved.
Rights: 
Related Image Identifier Link: 
MMA_.h1_1978.412.198.tif