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Northwest Native American Frog Mask (Replica)

In Fine Art > Masks > Show & Tell and Native American > Show & Tell.
Native American Antiques261 of 1889What is this?Vintage Lapis Lazuli
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    Posted 3 years ago

    (26 items)

    I got this wooden Pacific Northwest Native American frog mask from an antique dealer after I told him that it was an Indonesian copy of a mask that is found in several books about Northwest masks. So he gave it to me for free after I showed him evidence, because he was a man of integrity and did not want it anymore. It measures 8" x 9.5" and is a beautiful replica of the original mask.

    It's a shame that so many of these fake masks that were made in Indonesia have flooded the market and in sites like eBay for the past twenty-five years, and many unscrupulous dealers pass them off as real and charge people hundreds of dollars for a mask. One way to tell a fake is that many of these masks use mahogany instead of cedar. Another is that the back of the masks are sanded; Native American artist do not sand the back of the masks. Finally, there's the old saying, "If it's too good to be true, it probably is."

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    1. Atomz Atomz, 2 years ago
      I own several serigraphs created by the same Gitxsan artist - Robert B. Jackson, as well as authentic dance masks that Robert carved in the 1990's.
      I am also very active in the Facebook "Fraudulent Native Art Exposed" public group that aims to educate the lay public about the piracy and counterfeit of legitimate Northwest Coast works.
    2. Atomz Atomz, 2 years ago
      I recently acquired the original mask your piece is fashioned after - "Prince of Frogs" by Robert Bruce Jackson.
    3. ChristophersArt ChristophersArt, 2 years ago
      So I see, Atomz! And it has the copper jewelry adorning it. Can I ask how much you acquired that piece? It’s one of my favorite masks of the Pacific Northwest!
    4. Atomz Atomz, 2 years ago
      Hi ChristophersArt. "Prince of Frogs" and the companion Gitxsan "Marmot" mask (also carved by Robert Jackson) were acquired for roughly the price of a better copy. It really is tragic - the counterfeiting and piracy of Northwest Coast material culture is so widespread now that A) many members of the lay public are confused as to what is authentic and what is an 'overseas knock off'; B) Many would be purchasers are scared to purchase online; C) Auction Appraisers (lost themselves with so many online arti-fakes on Ebay, Pinterest, etc.) also have no idea of what they are looking at - authentic, arti-fake, or some newcomer's best effort??? The art market for Northwest Coast is particularly soft now and with so many online auctions clearing estates at rock bottom prices, once dedicated and supportive galleries are now buying from auctions at the fraction of the cost of buying directly from established artists. Also, the most respected gallery dedicated to Northwest Coast Art - Spirit Wrestler Gallery (authors of "Spirit Faces", "Mythic Beings", and "Seekers and Travellers" - closed earlier this year. If permissible and acceptable, kindly let me know if some lending arrangement can be made as I would like to incorporate your copy in my planned formal presentations. Also, kindly do check out the Facebook group: Fraudulent Native Art Exposed. I am close friends with the moderator Lucinda Turner, contribute frequently, and continue to educate the public about the broad threat of arti-fakes and cultural piracy. Kind Regards.

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